Entering camp as the Pittsburgh Steelers’ starting slot corner, Antoine Brooks Jr. left practice early today with an unknown injury, per Mike Tomlin. Tomlin deemed the injury as minor. A more serious injury appears to be with center J.C. Hassenauer, who was spotted wearing a knee/leg brace after suffering an injury on Saturday.
That info comes via ESPN’s Brooke Pryor, who tweeted the news a short time ago.
Injury update: Antoine Brooks left practice early, but Mike Tomlin said it’s not characterized as a serious injury.
C JC Hassenauer, who left practice early yesterday, was in a knee/leg brace today and didn’t participate. Tomlin characterized him as day to day.
— Brooke Pryor (@bepryor) July 25, 2021
Brooks has been working as Mike Hilton’s replacement early in camp and reportedly was putting together a couple of strong practices, including at least one interception of Ben Roethlisberger. He’s battling Arthur Maulet for top slot duties, but Brooks’ size and run defense could give the team a similar option to Hilton, known as one of the league’s most aggressive slot corners.
Hassenauer was competing for the starting center job with B.J. Finney and rookie Kendrick Green. The good news is Tomlin is calling Hassenauer day-to-day despite wearing a brace, a sign of a potentially more serious injury, but this is a time of year where injury reports aren’t required and information can be vague.
The Tribune-Review’s Chris Adamski tweeted out this video of Hassenauer walking with head trainer John Norwig during today’s practice.
The Steelers’ starting center* walking with head athletic trainer John Norwig at practice today
*-per the official depth chart pic.twitter.com/Y0f9vL3dm0
— Chris Adamski (@C_AdamskiTrib) July 25, 2021
Finney left yesterday’s practice with an injury too. It’s unclear if he practiced today (Update: according to photos on the team website, it appears he practiced Sunday). Green was excused from yesterday’s practice, but according to his Instagram feed, was back on his way to Pittsburgh last night. He likely practiced Sunday and is slated to start the team’s Hall of Fame Game against the Dallas Cowboys.