Just a few days ago the Steelers released a statement that they would not rush Rashard Mendenhall’s recovery. Not that they are rushing him now, but they did remove him from the PUP list.
It appears as though the injuries to the Pittsburgh Steelers are catching up with them as Baron Batch and Chris Rainey remain the only two healthy backs on the Steelers current roster.
On Tuesday, Pittsburgh placed John Clay on the waived/injured list and signed Jason Ford to the team with Isaac Redman is still listed as questionable with a groin injury. Jonathan Dwyer, who injured his shoulder in the preseason opener, is not pushing his recovery either.
This is the most banged up bunch of backs of recent years on the Steelers roster. Attempting to guess who will be the starting back in Denver for Week 1 would be tricky.
We know it won’t be Mendenhall. Even though he was removed from the PUP list, it doesn’t imply he will be ready to go. By removing him from the list it only means he won’t be on the regular season list, which requires you to sit the first 6 games of the year.
Many reports still say Mendenhall will likely miss the month of September. Luckily for the Steelers, the bye week comes October 1st after only three games.
In other big news from Latrobe, nose tackle Casey Hampton was also removed from the PUP list. Hampton who is still recovering from ACL surgery is used to missing the beginning of camp, usually for weight related reasons.
If Hampton can’t go Week 1, the job will likely go to Steve McLendon. McLendon put on a good display against Philadelphia in the preseason opener. Rookie Alameda Ta’amu will back up McLendon until Hampton can go.
Notes: Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie was fined $21,000 stemming from his hit on Byron Leftwich in the preseason opener….. As anticipated Max Starks was removed from the PUP list on Tuesday as well. The push for the big man to get moving didn’t take long after a bad performance by Mike Adams against Philadelphia.