The Pittsburgh Steelers have now released their first injury report of Week 16 ahead of their Sunday afternoon road game against the New York Jets and the Wednesday offering includes some good news when it comes to a few players who have recently missed playing time.
Not practicing on Wednesday for the Steelers were tackle Alejandro Villanueva (not injury related), inside linebacker Mark Barron (not injury related), center Maurkice Pouncey (not injury related), guard David DeCastro (not injury related), outside linebacker T.J. Watt (not injury related) and cornerback Artie Burns (illness). All but Burns were apparently given veteran days off on Wednesday and all six players will likely practice fully on Thursday.
Limited in practice on Wednesday for the Steelers was wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster (knee), who has missed the last four games. It’s still very unclear as to if Smith-Schuster will be healthy enough to play on Sunday against the Jets. Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin labeled Smith-Schuster as questionable for Sunday’s game when he talked to the media on Tuesday.
“He looked good,” quarterback Devlin Hodges said of Smith-Schuster after Wednesday’s practice. “Definitely nice to have him back again And when he’s out there it always makes me a little more comfortable. And he’s been in this system, knows what he’s doing, so it’s good to have him back.”
Another questionable for this week, tight end Vance McDonald (concussion), was able to practice fully on Wednesday. If McDonald is able to clear concussion protocol soon, he should be able to play Sunday against the Jets. McDonald missed the Steelers Sunday night game against the Buffalo Bills due to the concussion he suffered in the team’s Week 14 game.