The Pittsburgh Steelers are out of Latrobe and back at the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex, also referred to as the South Side Facility. We are already into the regular season, where everything is magnified and, you know, actually counts. The team is working through the highs and lows and dramas that go through a typical Steelers season.
How are the rookies performing? What about the players that the team signed in free agency? Who is missing time with injuries, and when are they going to be back? What are the coaches saying about what they are going to do this season that might be different from how it was a year ago?
These are the sorts of questions among many others that we have been exploring on a daily basis and will continue to do so. Football has become a year-round pastime and there is always a question to be asked, though there is rarely a concrete answer, as I’ve learned in my years of doing this.
Question: Will Olasunkanmi Adeniyi see snaps on defense this season?
Spurred on by an injury scare for one of their mere three outside linebackers on the 53-man roster, the Pittsburgh Steelers officially started the clock on rookie undrafted free agent Olasunkanmi Adeniyi, who has spent the regular season on injured reserve so far.
With Anthony Chickillo suffering a minor ankle injury on Sunday that didn’t prevent him from practicing yesterday, Adeniyi got the opportunity to start practicing for the first time all season, designated as a candidate to return from injured reserve. The team now has 21 days to activate him.
Now, they wouldn’t have made this move in the first place if it wasn’t their intention to activate him. They already know that he is healthy and frankly has been healthy for a while, so it’s not a matter of seeing where he is from a health standpoint.
Being healthy and being in football shape are different things, however. Though he has been a part of the team’s meetings and all that, he hasn’t been able to participate in on-field football activities. Practicing this week doesn’t mean he’s going to be activated this week, though it’s not impossible.
So the first question is how long it will take before the Steelers actually activate him off of injured reserve. The question that comes after that is when he will first be activated. After that is when we start figuring out whether or not he is going to be used for anything other than special teams.
When he is activated, a player such as Brian Allen, Marcus Allen, or Zach Banner would be the most likely candidates to lose their roster spot, all of whom would be eligible to be placed on the practice squad provided that they clear waivers.