The Pittsburgh Steelers got back to work on Wednesday, putting their 43-18 victory over the San Francisco 49ers behind them and turning their full attention to the St. Louis Rams in Week 3. As the team started its new work week, a couple of regulars missed practice, while one returned.
Gay (not injury related), Shazier (shoulder) and McCullers (knee) did not practice today. Cortez Allen (knee) was a full participant.— Ray Fittipaldo (@rayfitt1) September 23, 2015
As reported by Ray Fittipaldo of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Daniel McCullers (knee) and Ryan Shazier (shoulder) did not participate in today's practice. Cornerback William Gay was given a veteran's day off. While Gay was out for the day, another cornerback returned to practice and that was Cortez Allen.
Shazier's shoulder injury is certainly worth keeping an eye on throughout the week as the second-year inside linebacker is coming off of not only the best game of his professional career, but also a game where he proved the kind of difference-maker he can be when healthy. Any injury to a linebacker's shoulder, of course, can lead to some cause for concern. The team very well might be extra cautious with his injury in hopes of having him as healthy as possible on Sunday.
As for Allen, if he's cleared to play on Sunday, it'll be interesting to see how Mike Tomlin and Keith Butler handle the playing time, as well as who they activate on game day. In Allen's absence, Antwon Blake was the starter with Ross Cockrell and Brandon Boykin coming off of the bench to fill in where necessary. But if Allen is back in the lineup, it might lead to Boykin or Cockrell being inactive in St. Louis this Sunday.
With two days of practice remaining before the final injury report, the Steelers will take all the time they need to make sure all their players expected to participate in the game on Sunday will be ready to help the team advance to 2-1 before coming back home on a short week to play the Baltimore Ravens in Week 4.