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Steelers CB William Jackson III Returns To Practice, Opening 21-Day Window

Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback William Jackson III, acquired by the team via trade with the Washington Commanders before the Week 9 bye week, returned to practice Wednesday at the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex on the South Side, opening up his 21-day window to return from the Reserve/Injured List, the team announced. 

Jackson was placed on IR on Nov. 12 with a back injury that followed him from Washington. He was the corresponding 53-man roster move when the Steelers activated outside linebacker T.J. Watt ahead of the Week 10 matchup against the New Orleans Saints.

Acquired for a conditional seventh round pick from the Commanders, Jackson has yet to play a game for the Steelers, but did play and start in four games with the Commanders prior to the trade.

Upon joining the Steelers, Jackson wasn’t able to fully practice, but downplayed the back injury to reporters. 

“Three weeks ago, I just made a tackle and kind of felt it, played through it”, he said about wrenching his back in the Tennessee game, via the team’s website. “But, you know, as athletes we’re gonna always try to play through something”.

“It’s good” now, he said about his back now that he’s in Pittsburgh. “I’m getting around almost 100 percent and I’m just ready to get on the field.”

Of course, the back wasn’t “good” as he landed on IR and has missed the last eight weeks.

Jackson was eligible to return from the Reserve/Injured list ahead of the Week 14 matchup against the Baltimore Ravens on Dec. 11, but is just now returning to practice, opening up his 21-day window. The Steelers now have 21 days to assess Jackson’s fitness level in his return from injury and either activate him to the 53-man roster, or keep him on IR for the rest of the season.

The veteran cornerback is the second defensive back to have his 21-day window activated in the last week as fellow cornerback Ahkello Witherspoon had his 21-day window activated last week when he returned to practice last Wednesday.

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