The Pittsburgh Steelers are entering the third week of training camp, and throughout the first two weeks have compiled quite a list of injured players. Some injuries are more severe than others, but the team is hopeful to get some of those walking wounded back on the practice field sooner than later.
It should be noted, although the Steelers host the Seattle Seahawks this Saturday night, even if a player does return this week doesn’t necessarily signify their participation in the Week 1 preseason game. In fact, several of these veterans wouldn’t play in the game even if they were deemed healthy.
Nonetheless, here is a list of the injured players, and what we know now as the team prepares for their third week of workouts at Saint Vincent College.
Chase Claypool (shoulder)
Claypool hurt his shoulder near the end of the first week of camp, and hasn’t practiced since. He has been doing individual work, and Mike Tomlin said he could be returning to practice as early as this week. He is definitely a player to look for as returning in the near future.
Pat Freiermuth (hamstring)
Like Claypool, Freiermuth injured his hamstring in the first week of camp, but it was only days into workouts when he felt the tightness in his leg. Freiermuth has reportedly been running sprints on the sidelines at camp, which is a good sign of a return. This is obviously barring a setback, and anyone who has ever pulled a hamstring before knows how those can happen in a blink of an eye.
Marcus Allen (hamstring)
Allen too injured a hamstring, but his injury didn’t happen as early as the previous two players. It isn’t known how Allen is progressing, but for someone whose roster spot is far from certain, it would benefit Allen to get back on the practice field as soon as physically possible.
Minkah Fitzpatrick (wrist)
Fitzpatrick was taken off the Non-Football Injury (NFI) List last week, but has only participated in individual drills. At this point, why risk your starting free safety’s health during these workouts? Fitzpatrick coming off the NFI List is the news to know, he’ll be back to practicing fully soon.
Larry Ogunjobi (foot)
While Ogunjobi didn’t start on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) List, he hasn’t participated in any team drills to date. Tomlin has mentioned his name several times as players who are progressing their way back, so it is unclear when Ogunjobi will be joining his new teammates on the field. At this point, I doubt the Steelers will want to push Ogujobi back, a veteran who doesn’t necessarily need all the physical repetitions as a younger player.
Tyson Alualu (knee)
Alualu remains on the PUP List, but Tomlin has said he, like Ogunjobi, is progressing nicely.
Levi Wallace (illness)
Reports said Wallace didn’t look like himself in the first week of camp, and Tomlin said he missed a couple practices with an illness. As of last week he still hadn’t fully returned to work, but unless there is another injury of note, you’d expect Wallace to be back in the secondary in this third week of practice.
Cam Sutton (knee)
Sutton left Thursday’s camp practice with a knee injury which Tomlin said would need evaluated. That evaluation has happened, and Tomlin said it was not serious. This is great news for the secondary, but, like Claypool’s shoulder injury, it wouldn’t surprise anyone to see Sutton miss a few days as he eases his way back on the field.
Najee Harris (foot)
Harris had his foot stepped on during the first padded practice, and he hasn’t been back on the practice field since. But that doesn’t mean he hasn’t been present. Harris has been there in stretching lines, catching passes from quarterbacks and even helping the younger running backs get acclimated to things. Harris’ injury wasn’t deemed serious, so a return this week wouldn’t seem out of the realm of possibility.
Be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the Steelers as they prepare for the rest of training camp and the preseason.