The Pittsburgh Steelers placed tight end Ladarius Green on Reserve/PUP Tuesday afternoon and as a result he will now miss at least the first six weeks of the 2016 regular season. Now that this transaction has been made, it’s time to review the rules of Reserve/PUP.
Below is what the 2013 CBA league rule change says about Reserve/PUP:
Commencing on the day after the conclusion of the sixth regular season weekend and continuing through the day after the conclusion of the 11th regular season weekend, clubs are permitted to begin practicing players on Reserve/Physically Unable to Perform for a period not to exceed 21 calendar days. Pads and helmets are permitted during the 21-day period. At any time during the 21-day practice period, or prior to 4:00 p.m., New York time, on the day after the conclusion of the 21-day period, clubs are permitted to restore such players on Reserve/Physically Unable to Perform to their Active/Inactive List.
In summation, Green cannot begin practicing with the Steelers until the end of Week 6 of the 2016 regular season and he has until the end of Week 11 to do so. Once he is cleared to practice, a 21-day window then opens for Green and by the end of those three weeks the Steelers will have to decide whether or not to place him on their 53-man roster. Should Green be unable to resume practicing by the end of Week 11 of the 2016 regular season, he will be ineligible to return to play in 2016 moving forward.
Last year, former Steelers tackle Mike Adams started the regular season on the team’s Reserve/PUP list with a back issue and he never was able to resume practicing by Week 11, and thus was never activated to the 53-man roster.
One would think and hope that Green will be able to start practicing after Week 6 of the regular season if it’s his surgically repaired ankle that resulted in him not being ready by Week 1. If, however, the reports about Green suffering recurring headaches are the real reason as to why he hasn’t been able to practice, and not his ankle, then your guess is as good as mine as to whether or not the tight end will ever play a down in 2016 and beyond.