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Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Mid-week news, notes

Brett Keisel was a full participant in practice Tuesday as the Steelers held their final practices for Thursday night's game at Baltimore. Linebacker LaMarr Woodley, however, was only a partial participant.

The guess here is that Keisel will play - at least sparingly - as the Steelers try to nurse him back from a painful plantar fasciitis injury, while Woodley will sit out again and come back against Miami Dec. 8.

The Steelers are thin on the defensive line with Steve McLendon out and need as many of their defensive linemen ready to go as possible.

But remember this, McLendon played just 17 snaps in the first meeting with the Ravens, a 19-16 Pittsburgh win, as the Steelers played a lot of their sub-package against Baltimore's three wide receiver sets.

@ Speaking of the sub packages, Will Allen told me today that he will stay in as the third safety for the time being in place of rookie Shamarko Thomas.

Thomas is returning from an ankle injury and had 22 tackles in the Steelers' first nine games.

Allen has made 12 tackles, an interception, forced one fumble and recovered another in two games in Thomas' absence.

Can't argue with the move. You have to play the hot hand.

@ The key to Sunday's game could be rookie running back Le'Veon Bell for the Steelers.

Bell had his best rushing game of the season against the Ravens, running for 93 yards on 19 carries earlier this season.

Bell has averaged 88.9 total yards per game in his eight starts this season.


Anonymous said...

"The key to Thursday game"

But I understood what you meant Dale and agree, we need the running game. After watching what DeCastro did to Suh, I'm not as concerned about Ngata.

And BTW Dale, hopefully they give Thanksgiving off so that you can enjoy it with your family.

Dale Lolley said...

Ha. Day off? Surely you jest. I'll be in Baltimore.

Anonymous said...

Dale, that's too bad. In honor of your dedicated service, we'll drink a toast in your honor on Thanksgiving. Granted, being in Hawaii, no one will understand who I'm talking about, so we'll make it later on in the evening.

Anonymous said...

Funny how Will Allen was a bust with the Cowboys but immediately upon being placed in our scheme he's a useful player.

Thanks Jerry.

Maybe it was a little early to have Sharmarko in there.

rvaccare said...

Will Allen was solid in relief of Polamalu and Clark in his first stint with the Steelers. I really do not know why they didn't re-sign him. Probably cap issues and he probably wanted to get more money. But it's that way for a lot of players the leave Pittsburgh and return a year or two later.

Dale Lolley said...

Allen told me that he wanted a shot to start, which the Cowboys gave him. He started the first two games and had an interception in the opener against the Giants.