Wide receiver Antonio Brown was back on the practice field on Wednesday, returning for the first time since he injured his ankle in the second quarter against the New York Giants.
“It felt pretty good,” said Brown. “I am still a little sore, but it is a lot better than it was and I continue to get better. Today I practiced without tape and it was still a little achy. Tomorrow I am going to come out and tape it so it feels more comfortable and continue to find what feels good.”
Brown missed the last three games because of the injury, mainly hampered by the swelling in the ankle.
“When there is swelling on your feet it doesn’t allow you to put pressure on your leg and be as fluid in being able to run,” said Brown. “When you put pressure on the ground and your ankle is still swollen, you feel it through your leg and your mind. When you’re coming out fast and you want to stop, it’s hard to put on the brakes like I usually can. It’s a great thing that I’m back on my feet, I’m back running and I look forward to being out there.”
Being sidelined for three games, which included two losses to AFC North rivals, wasn’t easy for Brown and he hopes this week he can get back out there and have an impact on the offense.
“It’s always hard to watch your teammates in battle and you aren’t able to be out there to help them,” said Brown. “I am thankful I can be out there this week to help out.”
Guard David DeCastro, who was activated from the injured reserve/designated for return list earlier this week, increased his workload on Wednesday as he is moving closer to getting back in game action.
“Just getting back out there being with the guys was good (last week), but putting the pads on and playing real football will be nice,” said DeCastro.
DeCastro doesn’t know yet if he will be called upon to play or start this week, a call he said is in the hands of the coaching staff.
“I am listening to the coaches,” said DeCastro. “They know what they are doing. I am just trying to get out there and see how it feels with the pads on.”
Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (right shoulder) saw limited work in practice, as did receiver Jerricho Cotchery (ribs), while Troy Polamalu (calf) was a full participant.
Missing practice were tackles Mike Adams (ankle) and Max Starks (back), guard Willie Colon (knee), linebacker LaMarr Woodley (ankle) and quarterback Byron Leftwich (ribs).
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