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Antonio Brown's status vs. Broncos clouds Steelers offensive game plan

The Pittsburgh Steelers are hopeful they will Antonio Brown at their disposal Sunday vs. the Denver Broncos, but his status clouds the Steelers' offensive game plan.

Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Earlier in the week, Adam Schefter reported that Pittsburgh Steelers star wide receiver Antonio Brown might be sidelined with the after effects of a concussion he suffered during the Steelers Wild Card match against the Cincinnati Bengals.

Wednesday, the prognosis remained the same: It is not looking good for Brown's participation in the playoff game Sunday against the Denver BroncosMark Kaboly of TribLive reported that Brown is still in the concussion protocol and the Steelers have no intention on rushing his recovery.

Coach Mike Tomlin asserted, "We are going to adhere to it [NFL Concussion protocol] and follow it to the letter."

Brown's concussion was the result of a dirty hit by Bengals player Vontaze Burfict, who was subsequently suspended for the first three games of the 2016 season. Also injured are Ben Roethlisberger, whose status for Sunday is yet unknown, and running back DeAngelo Williams. All three players did not practice Wednesday as the team prepares for the Denver Broncos.

The team has tremendous depth at wide receiver, but Brown's absence would be a huge blow to a team that is known for its productive offense. Even more disruptive would be the absence of Ben Roethlisberger. Back up quarterback Landry Jones struggled against the Cincinnati Bengals after Roethlisberger left with an injury to his throwing shoulder, so much so that injured Ben Roethlisberger came back into the game at the end.

There should be more clarity about the injured players' participation against the Broncos as the week progresses, but you don't replace 136 receptions, 1,834 yards and 10 touchdowns overnight.