Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Injuries Leave Offensive Line Thinned Out

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Injuries Leave Offensive Line Thinned Out

Article excerpt

The injury list for the Steelers continues to grow, and Sunday against the New York Jets they might have to turn to their last standing offensive lineman to start at right tackle.

Coach Mike Tomlin listed starting right tackle Marcus Gilbert as "highly questionable" for the game against the Jets after he injured an ankle Sunday night in a 43-14 victory against the Kansas City Chiefs. Backup tackle Ryan Harris, who injured a leg in the Chiefs game, was deemed questionable.

If Gilbert and Harris cannot play, the Steelers would be forced to use Chris Hubbard as their starting right tackle. Hubbard, who has the versatility to play every position along the line, has never started an NFL game. He did have extensive starting experience as a tackle when he played in college at Alabama-Birmingham.

The injuries could force some roster moves. If it is deemed early in the week that Harris won't be available, the Steelers might have to add a tackle to the roster. That would prompt the team to make a decision on some injured players they've kept on the 53-man roster since the beginning of the season.

The injured reserve is a possibility for cornerback Senquez Golson and offensive lineman Cody Wallace, two players who already were ruled out for this week and haven't been available all season due to foot and knee injuries.

The Steelers could create two roster spaces if they placed Golson and Wallace on injured reserve. The problem with placing a player on injured reserve is only one player can be brought back to the active roster after getting that designation. And the Steelers already placed outside linebacker Bud Dupree on injured reserve after his abdominal surgery.

"Those things are always the subject of discussion when you're faced with additional injuries coming out of a game," Tomlin said Tuesday at his weekly news conference. "I'm not ready to make that judgment at this time. We're going to let the totality of today's rehabilitation be concluded and then assess where we are as we move into tomorrow before we consider such possibilities."

Several other players remain questionable for the game against the Jets, including starters Ryan Shazier, Robert Golden and Ramon Foster. …

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