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Sammie Coates reportedly to miss up to a month or longer after knee surgery

Will Coates be able to make the 53 man roster after missing so much time?

NFL: Pittsburgh Steelers-Minicamp Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Pittsburgh Steelers 2015 third round draft pick, Sammie Coates underwent a knee scope last week according to ESPN. The scope is expected to keep him out until mid-August or possibly longer. Coates will most likely be placed on the active PUP list and would not cost him regular season games. The knee injury occurred while training for the upcoming season. Coates had already recovered from offseason sports hernia surgery

The question is can he afford to miss a significant amount of time? During his rookie season, Coates was a lost year adjusting to the NFL. Coates had one lone reception for 11 yards. 2016 was a different story. Coates broke out during his first five games of action. He averaged 84.2 yards over that span and two TDs. Multiple broken fingers during the Jets game derailed the remainder of his season which saw him only reel in two more passes.

This could not be worse timing for the former Auburn Tiger as he is not assured of a roster spot in 2017. A packed WR depth chart has hungry players waiting for an opportunity to shine. Could this be the break that Darrius Heyward-Bey, Justin Hunter, Demarcus Ayers, Codi Hamilton or even Canaan Severin need to crack the 53 man roster? Could this change how many WRs Pittsburgh keeps on their roster?