The Steelers, thin at center due to two injuries, have signed former Arizona Cardinals center Alex Stepanovich.
Justin Hartwig has been bothered by a toe injury since training camp started July 31, and Darnell Stapleton is expected to be out for several weeks following left knee surgery. Stapleton, who began camp as the starting right guard, was the backup center last season.
The 6-foot-4, 296-pound Stepanovich was a fourth-round draft pick by the Cardinals in 2004 and spent three seasons with them before playing for Cincinnati in 2007 and Atlanta in 2008. He has played in 46 NFL games, making 34 starts.
This could be a sign that the team got bad news on Stapleton, who was at training camp on Sunday during family day. Stapleton had his right knee heavily wrapped.
Of course it could also be that they just don't want to wear Doug Legursky and A.Q. Shipley, the only two healthy centers they have, out.
I would expect Hartwig to try to return to practice on a full-time basis soon - likely next Saturday when the team returns to Saint Vincent College from its preseason opener.