Expect the Pittsburgh Steelers to add a few more tight ends over the coming days. Matt Spaeth's season may be over.
Ouch. Unconfirmed, but I'm hearing #Steelers TE Matt Spaeth will have lisfranc surgery that will end season. That's middle of foot.— Dejan Kovacevic (@Dejan_Kovacevic) August 9, 2013
Confirmation came soon after.
#Steelers need a No 2 TE: Matt Spaeth has Lis Franc sprain, out 8-10 weeks.— Gerry Dulac (@gerrydulac) August 9, 2013
If recent history is repeating itself, Matt Spaeth will miss the rest of the 2013 season. Santonio Holmes and Maurice Jones-Drew lost their 2012 seasons to the same injury, setting a precedent for the expected timetable for recovery. Dulac has set Spaeth's timetable at '8-10 weeks', but the team cannot rely on his being completely healthy by then.
With Spaeth gone, David Johnson still on the mend, and Heath Miller still on the PUP list recovering from an ACL tear, youngsters David Paulson and Jaime McCoy are left to shoulder the load at the top of the depth chart. Paulson was a seventh-round draft pick in 2012. McCoy was a practice squad player in Pittsburgh last season.
Spaeth was signed to fill the void left by Miller. The team has the option of leaving Miller on PUP, which would allow him to return after Week 6. They can place him on IR with designation for return which would allow him to come back after Week 8. Either option would have granted the Steelers a roster exemption during his absence. If Spaeth will not be ready until after Miller is back, he no longer fits Pittsburgh's plans.
The Steelers have added Peter Tuitupou, Nathan Overbay and Michael Palmer this off-season, but the Steelers may continue to seek game ready talent, especially considering their preseason schedule starts Saturday night at Heinz Field against the New York Giants at 7:30 pm ET
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