Safety Troy Polamalu (calf) and linebacker James Harrison (knee) did not practice on Wednesday, but linebacker Stevenson Sylvester was back on the field. Sylvester, who missed the preseason and the Steelers first two regular season games with a knee injury, practiced in a limited basis but said he felt good afterwards.
“It was good to be back out there,” said Sylvester. “I felt good. I have been out about four or five weeks, it felt like two years. It felt good to be out there with all of my teammates. I tested my knee out. It did better than I thought it would do. It felt good.”
Sylvester said that he gave the knee a full test, not holding back as he knows he needs to see exactly where he is if there is any potential for him playing this week against the Oakland Raiders.
“When you first go out there like I did today you have to go at it and see where you are,” said Sylvester. “That is what I did today and I felt pretty good. I am not sure if I am going to play this week. We are going to see how it goes the next couple of days.”
He is definitely chomping at the bit to get on the field, as being on the sidelines on game day is not his idea of fun. But the bottom line is he knows he has to be smart about it.
“It’s killing me,” said Sylvester. “I can’t sit back and watch my team play three games without me. Even in the preseason it was hard to stay out. It’s very hard to sit back and watch your team do work and do things you wish you were out there doing.
“The main thing is getting healthy. You want to go out there and do the job the right way. You don’t want to be a 50 percent guy when there is a guy 100 percent able to do the job. You have to go out there and be healthy.”
In addition running back Rashard Mendenhall went full tilt on Wednesday after Coach Mike Tomlin said they were going to “thud him up a little bit” in practice this week to see where not just his knee is, but his overall game readiness.
“It felt normal, it felt natural,” said Mendenhall. “I was hit more in space, things like that, but no different than what I have done before. The defense was making more of an effort to hit so that was the difference.
“It’s just enough to get prepared for a game situation. You don’t prepare for it fully, that takes care of itself in the game. It’s about getting out of your comfort zone. It was cool. It was all good.”
Mendenhall, who hasn’t worn a sleeve or brace in practice, said he is still taking things day-to-day and when asked if he would play on Sunday, said “possibly.” And when he does return, he feels like he will be able to pick things up right where he left off.
“Yes I believe so,” said Mendenhall. “It’s this whole process, rehab, going through it and taking it day-by-day. I am preparing to get back to that level and nothing else. That is where my focus is.”
In addition to Harrison and Polamalu, running back Jonathan Dwyer (toe), tackle Marcus Gilbert (groin), tight end Heath Miller (abdomen), and wide receivers Emmanuel Sanders (knee) and Mike Wallace (groin) did not practice. Tackle Mike Adams (back) practiced on a limited basis.
Posted in News, Player | 5 Comments »