The Pittsburgh Steelers resumed training camp practices on Thursday at Heinz Field and the session included several players who have recently missed some time being back in pads and working in some capacity. After practice ended, Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin updated the health of the team.
“We had a couple of guys miss time today; Eric Ebron was out with illness,” Tomlin said. “Anthony McFarland is being examined for a potential concussion. He’s in the protocol, I don’t know what that means. Obviously, we’ll update you guys as we get pertinent information. Several guys were out and continue to be listed as day-to-day, Ryan Switzer among them. Kerrith Whyte among them. Other guys that are continuing to work in a limited capacity that have been described as day to day, but are working their way back to us; [Chris] Wormley and [Wendell] Smallwood and Diontae Johnson; JuJu Smith-Schuster, Kevin Dotson and others. It’s just the dog days of summer. That’s how it is.”
That is how it is. The fact, however, that wide receivers JuJu Smith-Schuster and Diontae Johnson are both back back practicing again is very encouraging. Also back in pads on Thursday per pre-practice footage were Chukwuma Okorafor (groin), Terrell Edmunds (undisclosed), Alexander Myres (groin), tackle Jarron Jones (new), and tight end Vance McDonald (veteran day). Chris Wormley (shoulder), by the way, was spotted doing some sled drills while wearing his helmet and no pads.
While new steelers fullback Derek Watt has been practicing throughout training camp, he apparently has been limited. On Thursday, Tomlin explained why Watt has been limited.
“Yeah, our target is opening a weekend for him and so we’ve been thoughtful about his process,” Tomlin said of Watt. “He’s a guy that’s coming off of a surgery. He’s getting in-helmet perspective on work every day. He’s in uniform, we’re just limiting some of the things that he does in an effort to make sure that we get that daily exposure to the process. And so we’re thoughtfully revving up his participation and it’s going to increase as the days go by.”