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Steelers Injury Report: JuJu Smith-Schuster returns to practice on Wednesday

Smith-Schuster and James Conner were full participants for the first time since Week 11

NFL: DEC 01 Browns at Steelers Photo by Mark Alberti/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers had their first practice of Week 15 as they prepare to take on the Buffalo Bills at Heniz Field this coming Sunday night. According to the Steelers PR Department, there were six players who did not participate in practice on Wednesday.

Wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster had yet to practice since Week 11 with a knee injury until today. Smith-Schuster was able to return to practice on Wednesday as a full participant. Although James Conner is still dealing with the shoulder injury he reaggravated in Week 11, he was also able to return as a full participant. Practicing in a limited capacity over the last two weeks, Conner joined Smith-Schuster in making a significant step in returning to the lineup..

Running back Jaylen Samuels suffered a groin injury against the Cardinals on Sunday. His availability for Sunday is still up in the air as he did not participate in practice on Wednesday. Tight end Vance McDonald is in the NFL’s concussion protocol after leaving last Sunday’s game in the second half and was unable to practice on Wednesday. Should McDonald not be able to clear the protocol by Sunday, the Steelers will be left with only tight ends Nick Vannett and rookie Zach Gentry who has only dressed for three games in 2019.

The other players who did not practice on Wednesday were due to a coaches decision. Mark Barron and Maurkice Pouncey have been given Wednesdays off most weeks in 2019. New additions to having time off the first day of practice this week were guard David DeCastro and tackle Alejandro Villanueva.

As for the Buffalo Bills injury report, it can be seen below courtesy of

Buffalo Bills Participation/Injury Report, Week 15

Wednesday, December 11

LB Lorenzo Alexander (Rest) - DNP

DE Jerry Hughes (Rest) - DNP

DT Corey Liuget (Knee) - DNP

OT Ty Nsekhe (Ankle) - DNP