Between the injury report and the roster move, the inactive list has a lot of different possibilities for this week.
OT Marcus Gilbert (knee)
S Morgan Burnett (back)
LB Bud Dupree (Pectoral)
CB Cam Sutton (Personal)
LB Ola Adeniyi
LB Matthew Thomas
Here are the possibilities to end up inactive for Week 13:
OT Marcus Gilbert- he is out for a sixth straight game, missing seven now on the season. With two different players filling in nicely in his absence, the talk of Gilbert’s future in the Steel City is bound to increase.
QB Mason Rudolph- here’s hoping Rudolph gets a hat in Week 17 because the game is meaningless.
OT Zach Banner- I honestly thought Banner would get a helmet last week for depth with Feiler being questionable. But the special teams need was too much. So if he didn’t play last week, there’s no chance he’ll be dressed for this one. Personally, I think he should be breathing a sigh of relief that he is still on the 53 after the roster move was made.
DT L.T. Walton- although he did get a chance for two weeks to show what he could do in game action, Walton was not enough of a standout to overtake any other defensive lineman. With Stephon Tuitt getting back in the starting lineup, Walton gets to watch yet again.
S Morgan Burnett- The Steelers have yet to play someone in 2018 with a doubtful designation. And with the report of Marcus Allen possibly being active for the first time, I don’t see any way Burnett plays.
WR Justin Hunter or James Washington- it could go either way between these two. Washington has struggled lately and seems to be lacking confidence, so making him inactive could compound the situation even more. I thought it was a mistake when he was inactive coming out of the bye. If Hunter gets the nod instead, Washington could be a wash for the rest of 2018.
CB Cam Sutton or S Marcus Allen- I know. I already mentioned the report of Allen being active this week. Too many other times I thought he was a possibility, but the Steelers have yet to make the move. So I’m not a believer yet. And with Sutton been questionable because of a personal matter, it’s really hard to judge if he’s going to play or not.
LB Bud Dupree- his practice participation trended in the right direction all week. Unless he has a setback, I see the Steelers having him go but possibly not giving him quite the workload as he would get otherwise.
CB Brian Allen- if Cam Sutton is available, I still see Brian getting the nod over Marcus. This has been the decision every week it has come up so far in 2018.
LB Ola Adeniyi- it would make no sense to activate Ola from the IR on Saturday if the plan was not to dress him on Sunday. It could be insurance if Dupree can’t go, but if Ola is on the 53, let’s find a way to get him a helmet and see what he can do at least on special teams.
Projected Inactive List:
- Mason Rudolph
- Marcus Gilbert
- Morgan Burnett
- Zach Banner
- L.T. Walton
- Justin Hunter
- Marcus Allen
There’s a real possibility the final two spots on this list could be completely different. Between Washington, Dupree, Sutton, Adeniyi, and Brian Allen, there are too many factors to do anything other than take a wild guess. I’m going with Hunter because, frankly, it’s what I want. And as much as I’d like to see Marcus Allen on the field, I won’t believe he is active on game day until I finally see it, regardless of the reports.
Feel free to list your projected inactives in the comments below.