With everything being off for the Steelers this week with the short turnaround to play on Thursday, players injured in Week 10 barely had any time to recover for Week 11. Fortunately for the Steelers, only three players had been ruled out. But with Roosevelt Nix and Ryan Switzer headed to the IR Thursday afternoon, there may be more healthy scratches than expected. So it is the questionable players which will make predicting in active list a little tricky, along with a large amount of players who could fill the remaining spots.
RB Benny Snell Jr. (knee)
OLB Anthony Chickillo (Ribs)
CB Joe Haden (Illness)
Here are the possibilities to end up inactive for Week 11:
RB Benny Snell Jr.- he must be getting close to a return, otherwise I feel the Steelers would have put him on the Reserved/Injured List.
QB Paxton Lynch- the best thing about the Steelers keeping a third quarterback on the 53-man roster is a guaranteed inactive spot to correctly predict every week.
DL L.T. Walton- much like 2018, Walton is only going to ever get a helmet if another defensive lineman is down with injury. Not this week.
CB Joe Haden- it was very disappointing to see Haden on the injury report Wednesday. It wasn’t officially stated what sort of illness Haden is dealing with, so hopefully he will be ready to go against his former team. Add in the report which surfaced early on Thursday afternoon that Haden is good to go, he could technically be bumped down to the next category.
OLB Anthony Chickillo- struggling with a rib injury, I didn’t see Chickillo missing the game and leaving the Steelers shorthanded without a roster move to help with the position. With the corresponding roster move Thursday afternoon to add another outside linebacker, it looks more likely the Chickillo could be sitting out.
RB Tony Brooks-James- with three running back‘s ahead of him on the depth chart, Brooks-James could be active as part of the return game. It’s just very difficult to use a roster spot for this single position.
LB Robert Spillane- when their name is called in the game due to a penalty on special teams, it’s not a good look for making sure a player is active on game day. Spillane had multiple penalties, but the Steelers keeping him on the roster means he will probably be active.
TE Zach Gentry- he’s been the guy who hasn’t been active for quite some time now. Although nothing has changed with the tight end position, having one less wide receiver could mean Gentry slides in to an active position.
OT Chukwuma Okorafor- it would be crazy for a player to go from starting one week and playing 100% of the offensive snaps to being a healthy scratch the next game. Do the Steelers really need eight offensive lineman active on game day?
CB Justin Layne- with Joe Haden shaky due to an illness, it would be nice if the Steelers find a way to make sure Layne is active when returning to his hometown.
OLB Jayrone Elliott- the situation with Elliott is a little different than with Jones because he did not practice with the Steelers this week since he is unable to be on the Steelers practice squad. But spending so much time with the Steelers, he could be used if Chickillo can’t go.
WR Tevin Jones- it doesn’t make any sense for the Steelers to make the roster move ahead of the game if they weren’t going to have either player active.
Projected Inactive List:
- Benny Snell Jr
- Paxton Lynch
- L.T. Walton
- Anthony Chickillo
- Tony Brooks-James
- Zach Gentry
- Chuks Okorafor
This list was much easier the first time I did it before the roster moves. But needing to fill two more spots, I feel Chickillo is probably out with the Steelers bringing in Elliott today. It very well could be a game-time decision and the Steelers just wanted to have someone just in case. Although I wanted to originally have the Steelers carry the extra offensive lineman, I just don’t see how they can and have enough players for special teams. Therefore I have Justin Layne ahead of Chuks. But at this point, these are pure guesses as it is unclear what the Steelers are going to be able to do.
As always, feel free to list your projected inactives in the comments below.