The Pittsburgh Steelers’ first injury report of the week might appear to feature a long list of names, but more than half of the players sitting out practice on Wednesday were the beneficiaries of a coach’s day off. The key injury concerns heading into Week 5 appear to be Vince Williams and Morgan Burnett, with Chris Boswell and Darrius Heyward-Bey making a surprise appearance on the list to start the week.
Steeers injury report features surprise appearance from kicker Chris Boswell. Lots of veteran days off sprinkled in, too. pic.twitter.com/SV7tRhF0di— Jeremy Fowler (@JFowlerESPN) October 3, 2018
Williams’ absence was always expected after he left the contest early against the Baltimore Ravens with a hamstring injury, and he’s in danger of missing the first game of his career due to injury on Sunday. Tyler Matakevich, L.J. Fort and Matthew Thomas all received snaps with the first-team in his place, and it appears a combination of these players would replace him against the Atlanta Falcons if he cannot play.
With Burnett continuing to work his way back from a groin injury, his participation on game day will not happen unless he can at least train fully with the team on Thursday or Friday. After a teammate stepped on his foot during practice, Chris Boswell was forced to leave the field early on Wednesday, but it’s presumed he’ll be available to play against the Falcons.
Chris Boswell had his foot stepped on in practice today. He is expected to be fine for Sunday.— Ray Fittipaldo (@rayfitt1) October 3, 2018
Chris Boswell will be a full participant on the injury report because he didn't miss any kicking drills. Punter Jordan Berry said Boswell was "scraped" by a cleat during practice. The injury is to Boswell's left foot.— Joe Rutter (@tribjoerutter) October 3, 2018
The availability of Heyward-Bey could be in doubt, having sat out training with an ankle injury. But there was better news to share about the health of Mike Hilton after he was a full participant in practice, albeit wearing a brace on his elbow.
Mike Hilton practiced full today. He wore a brace on his elbow for protection and said he will wear it in the game. Big boost for the defense with the high-powered Falcons offense coming to town.— Ray Fittipaldo (@rayfitt1) October 3, 2018
Although Ben Roethlisberger, Joe Haden and Maurkice Pouncey were listed among the players missing practice, it’s presumed each was given a veteran rest day, as has become the norm for a number of key starters this season. All are expected to be back at practice on Thursday.