The Steelers appear to be taking a path of patience when it comes to injuries in 2012.
Linebacker James Harrison was a late-week scratch from Pittsburgh's Week 1 game against Denver, and he ended up not playing in Weeks 2 and 3, either. Coming back in Week 5, after the Steelers bye, Harrison played the whole game, and performed admirably.
So did Rashard Mendenhall, who was held out the first three games but practiced each week. LB Stevenson Sylvester returned at the same time, a few weeks after the initial reported time he was expected to miss.
That's plenty of reason to believe Troy Polamalu (calf) and LaMarr Woodley (hamstring) will not play in Thursday's Week 6 game at Tennessee.
In fact, perhaps they didn't wait long enough for Polamalu, who was injured in that Week 1 game at Denver, and missed Weeks 2 and 3. He re-injured his calf quickly in the Steelers' Week 5 win over Philadelphia.
Not that any opponent in the NFL should be overlooked - least of all any home team on prime time, where the hosts are 13-3 heading into Monday night's game between the Jets and Houston in New York - but the Titans are beatable without Polamalu and Woodley, and if those players aren't healthy, they've got a long time to rest before Pittsburgh's prime time game at Cincinnati in Week 7.
We'll have a full injury report when Steelers coach Mike Tomlin addresses the media.