A few player updates that are coming down through the wire today for the Steelers season opener in Denver on Sunday night.
According to multiple sources, James Harrison did not practice on Friday again, second straight day, and will be a game time decision. Normally when a player doesn’t practice on the Friday before a game, that’s a good indication that he won’t be available at all. At this point most of us would be somewhat surprised if Harrison plays this weekend. Logic would tell you to give that knee another weeks’ worth of rest rather than risk further injury.
Ralph Paulk of the Pittsburgh Tribune Review: Steelers linebacker James Harrison will be a game-day decision for the regular-season opener at Denver on Sunday. Harrison, still recovering from minor knee surgery last month, did not practice today.”The knee didn’t feel too good, and they (team physicians) want to let it rest and see if rest will help it,” Harrison said. “They’ll make a decision when the game comes.”
Harrison said he prefers to play, but second-year linebacker Chris Carter is likely to get the start against the Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Carter, who played mostly special teams last season, played most of the minutes at right outside linebacker during the preseason.
“I’m just trying to stay prepared for any situation that comes up,” Carter said. “I really don’t try to get too involved with what’s going on with James. If he can’t play, then I have to be ready.”
On a good note, Isaac Redman practiced again today and looks like he’ll be ready to go in whatever role is asked of him. He is coming off an ankle injury that has limited him in practice since the preseason. Assuming that Redman does start, we will see a healthy dose of Jonathan Dwyer regardless.
Todd Haley will use a rotation of ball carriers each week regardless of who is healthy, and when Rashard Mendenhall is able to return that will add another dimesion to the offense.
Ryan Clark is out of this game as per usual when the Steelers play in Denver, but Ryan Mundy will take his place, and says he’s ready to go.
“It’s like a cat and mouse game,” said Mundy. “We are waiting until the last second on the play clock to show what we are doing and he is waiting until the last second on the play clock to try to get a play called.
“It’s going to come down to who executes the best. We can line up in every defense, but we still have to execute. That is what it is going to come down to.”