Coach Mike Tomlin said it is unlikely Pro Bowl return specialist and wide receiver Antonio Brown will be able to play when the Steelers host the Kansas City Chiefs Monday night at Heinz Field.
Brown sprained his left ankle on a deep pass near the end of the first quarter against the New York Giants and did not return. Tomlin said his participation is "much in doubt" because his type of injury limits a player "who earns a living the way he earns a living -- with short-term quickness."
Tomlin also said Pro Bowl safety Troy Polamalu (torn right calf), who has missed six of the eight games, including the past four, has a chance to return Nov. 16 against the Baltimore Ravens. Polamalu and right tackle Marcus Gilbert (ankle) will begin practicing on a limited basis this week.
Tomlin made the comments during his weekly televised news conference.
Tomlin also said rookie running back Chris Rainey, who bruised his ribs against the Giants, "has a chance" to play against the Chiefs. However, he added that Rainey, who also returns kickoffs, could "big-time uncomfortable" because of the injury.
If Brown and Rainey do not play, Tomlin said wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders is expected to return both punts and kickoffs. Sanders had a 63-yard punt return against the Giants.
Running back Jonathan Dwyer (quad strain), who did not play against the Giants after posting back-to-back 100-yard rushing performances, has "a strong chance" to play against the Chiefs, Tomlin said. But running back Rashard Mendenhall was listed as questionable and could miss his fourth game in a row with an Achilles tendon injury.