Pittsburgh Steelers: MIke Tomlin expects LB Sean Spence to make full recovery

Last week Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker coach Keith Butler raised some red flags when he proclaimed that Steelers’ LB Sean Spence would never play football again.

That apparently was news to Steelers’ head coach Mike Tomlin.

Aug 30, 2012; Pittsburgh , PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Sean Spence (51) is helped to a cart after being injured against the Carolina Panthers during the second half of the game at Heinz Field. The Steelers won the game, 17-16. Mandatory Credit: Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports

The rookie from the University of Miami suffered a gruesome knee injury during a preseason game last season and was lost for the entire season. Butler said last week that Spence might never play again after and it would be “miraculous” if Spence were to come back in 2013 or 2014.

Butler also added:

“He’s not only a very intelligent football player but he is going to provide some intangibles in our locker room that we desperately need, I think,” Butler said, according a transcript from the club. “We’re going to ride with him for another year, I think. Hopefully his knee will respond and he can play again.”

Tomlin on the other hand offered up a different assessment.

“I did hear the opinion regarding Spence,” Tomlin said, according to the Steelers. “My opinion differs. I think he’s going to have a full recovery, but now you have two opinions, neither of which are expert medical opinions. Do with it what you wish.”

Tomlin did say that the rehab of Spence, along with other injured Steelers’ Heath Miller (knee) and Marcus Gilbert (ankle) is “going according to plan.”

It is very clear though that the Steelers still hope that Spence will be a part of the franchise and they see him as a part of the future.

They didn’t address linebacker depth in the draft, so it looks as if they are counting on return sometime.

As a guy that followed Spence’s college career very closely, he’s a guy I wouldn’t write off making a full recovery and comeback.

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Topics: Mike Tomlin, Pittsburgh Steelers, Sean Spence

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