The Steelers activated center Maurkice Pouncey from his two-game suspension, but he won’t return to the active roster until Wednesday.
Pouncey was placed on the commissioner’s permission list the Steelers announced on Monday. The exemption expires at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 4.
Pouncey was initially suspended three games for his role in the Steelers’ brawl with the Cleveland Browns in Week 12. He punched and kicked Browns defensive end Myles Garrett after Garrett attacked Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph in the waning seconds of the game.
His suspension was reduced from three games to two games after he appealed the initial ruling.
Pouncey, 30, appeared in all 10 games for the Steelers before his suspension and had his streak of starting 26 consecutive games snapped. Pouncey has played and started in 118 games for the Steelers since being the team’s first-round draft pick out of Florida in 2010.
It’s not clear exactly why the Steelers asked the NFL for the roster exemption, which means that Pouncey will be paid, but will not count toward the 53-man roster. They released center Patrick Morris, meaning that they have 53 players, including Pouncey, on the 53-man roster.
Morris did not appear in Sunday’s rematch with the Browns. He joined the Steelers in 2018 as an undrafted free agent out of TCU and dressed for his first NFL game on Sunday.
Fourth-year reserve B.J. Finney started his second consecutive game at center in place of Pouncey.