The Pittsburgh Steelers are on bye in Week 4, and though most teams would probably hate having their off week so early in the year, they probably think that it is an open date that is perfectly timed.
Pittsburgh has been dealing with a mess load of injuries all season long, most notably the ones to S Troy Polamalu and LB James Harrison. Both men have been listed as questionable now for three straight weeks on the injury report. Harrison has yet to play this year. Polamalu has been out since Week 2.
These two aren’t the only ones that are up in the air. The running game might get a huge lift from two returners in Week 5 against the Philadelphia Eagles. RB Rashard Mendenhall fell out of favor just a bit at the end of last year for the Steelers, but he seems to be just about over his ACL injury that took him out of the fold for nine months, and he might be ready to join a backfield that has been awful all year long. T Mike Adams, the team’s second round draft pick, missed Week 3 with a back injury, but he might be ready to go as well. That could be crucial for QB Ben Roethlisberger as well, as he is going to be rushed in a huge way by DE Jason Babin and all of the Philly defensive ends and linebackers next Sunday.
More good news for the Steelers: TE Weslye Saunders will be eligible to be reinstated after being suspended for the first three games of the year, and LB Stevenson Sylvester hopes to come back to the team after suffering a knee injury as well.
Unfortunately, G David DeCastro, the first round pick in the 2012 NFL Draft, still hasn’t suited thanks to an MCL injury and is still a minimum of eight weeks away from returning to the lineup, and LB Sean Spence, the third round draft choice, remains on the IR.
One would figure that the Steelers will be favorites on the NFL odds in Week 5 regardless of who does and does not play, knowing that the Eagles will be coming to Heinz Field.