The Pittsburgh Steelers’ offense has been short-handed for the last few weeks. Trying to get the job done with a third string quarterback, no top tier running back and without their No. 1 wide receiver.
Yet, throughout the trials and tribulations the Steelers have rattled off 3 straight wins.
As they prepare for the Buffalo Bills to invade Heinz Field in Week 15 for a Sunday night showdown, fans of the Steelers already know they will be without JuJu Smith-Schuster, but there is some good news breaking this morning involving the availability of James Conner.
Conner, who practiced fully all week, was officially listed on the team’s final injury report as questionable, but according to multiple sources, Conner is expected to play on Sunday night.
This per Adam Schefter of ESPN:
Steelers’ RB James Conner, listed as questionable for Sunday night with a shoulder injury, is expected to play against Buffalo, per sources.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 15, 2019
This per Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network:
#Steelers RB James Conner (shoulder) is expected to return to the field today and he should be treated as the starter. However, expect Conner to split carries with Jaylen Samuels and Benny Snell.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) December 15, 2019
Rapoport brings up a question many have wondered this week when discussing the possibility of Conner returning to the lineup — who will be the odd man out if Conner returns?
Rapoport lists Jaylen Samuels, who missed practice Wednesday with a groin injury but had no injury designation, as someone who will split carries, but the Steelers aren’t likely to dress five running backs in the upcoming game.
So, who is the odd man out?
Benny Snell Jr.
Kerrith Whyte Jr.
All have value on multiple levels for the Steelers, but the tough choice will have to be made. Logic says Edmunds could/should be the odd man out, but there have been questionable choices made in this department before.
Fans should be excited to have Conner back in the lineup, if he can get through a game without re-injuring his shoulder. Conner brings a dynamic playmaking ability which isn’t found in the other Steelers running backs. Conner’s potential return will bring with it a spark, and a wrinkle, to the huge Week 15 game vs. Buffalo.
Be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the black-and-gold as they prepare for the Buffalo Bills on Sunday Night Football.