At first glance the Pittsburgh Steelers first injury report of Week 16 might cause you to gasp and shake your head in disappointment. After all, Mike Tomlin painted an optimistic picture of the team’s injury situation at his Tuesday press conference. But the truth of the matter is although things might look bleak, it is far too early to judge the eventual status of several key players.
Players like Anthony Chickillo (ankle), Shamarko Thomas (concussion), Stephon Tuitt (knee) and Ladarius Green (concussion) all missed practice Wednesday, but could very well have been held out for precautionary reasons. In other words, there is still a chance some of these players return to practice Thursday, and get back on track to play this Sunday in a huge game at Heinz Field.
The lone player who should concern fans is Green. When a player enters the NFL’s concussion protocol, they have to wait until they are symptom-free before getting back on the practice field, all while being monitored. This isn’t to say he won’t be back at practice on Thursday, but the odds of him recovering in time for the game Sunday certainly aren’t in his favor.
In very positive injury news, DeAngelo Williams (knee) looks ready to get back on the field after being a full participant, and Darrius Heyward-Bey (foot) and Ricardo Mathews (ankle) were limited participants.
A lot can change in the course of three days, but the Steelers protocol for most players is if they don’t practice by Friday, even in a limited role, they won’t be playing on Sunday.
Take a look at the injury reports for both the Steelers and Ravens below:
DID NOT PARTICIPATE
LB Anthony Chickillo (Ankle)
T Marcus Gilbert (Not Injury Related)
TE Ladarius Green (Concussion)
QB Ben Roethlisberger (Not Injury Related)
S Shamarko Thomas (Concussion)
DE Stephon Tuitt (Knee)
RB DeAngelo Williams (Knee)
Baltimore’s injury report will be added when the organization supplies it to the Steelers.