The Steelers got a good bit more healthy on Thursday, as eight of the 10 players that missed Wednesday’s practice returned to work for the team’s second session in preparation for hosting the Denver Broncos on Sunday.
Guards David DeCastro (knee) and Stefen Wisniewski (pectoral muscle) were the lone holdouts. DeCastro has missed several weeks since injuring his knee in a training camp scrimmage. Wisniewski started the Steelers’ season opener against the New York Giants on Monday night in his place, but left the game in the fourth quarter, giving way to rookie Kevin Dotson, who appears to be in line to start in Week 2.
James Conner also left that game with an ankle injury, but was a full participant in practice on Thursday. Head coach Mike Tomlin said on Tuesday that he would “leave the light on” for both Conner and Wisniewski to return to action. Conner’s participation on Thursday portends a positive trend, though Benny Snell was productive while replacing him on Monday and could demand a greater workload going forward.
Wide receivers Diontae Johnson (toe) and JuJu Smith-Schuster (knee) and defensive end Stephon Tuitt (Achilles) all finished the game but did not practice on Wednesday with apparently minor ailments and returned to action on Thursday.
Also back at work were left tackle Alejandro Villanueva, who missed Wednesday with an illness, and center Maurkice Pouncey and quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, who were given Wednesday off.