UNITY TWP., Pa. — For the first time since he went down a week ago, Steelers strong safety Keanu Neal donned the pads and took the field. While he did not participate in team periods, he did go through some individual drills, making him limited for the first time since suffering the injury. Pittsburgh’s two injured safeties that figure into their rotation are now back on the field in some capacity.
Rookie cornerback Joey Porter Jr. and outside linebacker Nick Herbig both returned to action on Chuck Noll Field on Tuesday, but remained only limited on Wednesday as the Steelers carried on their preparations for their first preseason game at Tampa Bay on Friday. Veteran safety Damontae Kazee and second-year defensive lineman DeMarvin Leal also got back to work in limited fashion off to the side.
Guard Kevin Dotson suffered a shoulder injury yesterday but was back out there on Wednesday with no limitations. As such, it seems that the injury will not be anything that hampers him moving forward.
The team’s first of two second-round picks have been working between the first and second team at outside cornerback throughout training camp, and with veteran Patrick Peterson unlikely to see significant reps in the preseason opener against the Buccaneers, Porter should be in line for a lengthy workload on Friday night, if his recovery cooperates.
Herbig was also hurt in Saturday’s practice, suffering a right hip flexor injury. He also did not return on Saturday and then was held out of Sunday’s practice.
The fourth-round pick has been a very consistent contributor on the second-team Steelers defense, working in behind T.J. Watt at left outside linebacker. The undersized Wisconsin product has drawn rave reviews for his quickness and pass-rush skillset.
Kazee suffered an ankle injury in the first week of training camp and has been slowly working his way to a return. Leal got his ankle rolled up in a drill last week. One other Steelers safety remains out in Tre Norwood (calf). Running back John Lovett (undisclosed) also remains out.
Head coach Mike Tomlin said that anyone that is healthy enough will play on Friday against Tampa Bay.
STEELERS INJURY REPORT
|OG Kevin Dotson||Right shoulder||Aug. 9||Healthy||Active, FP Aug. 9|
|DB Tre Norwood||Calf||Aug. 6||Day to day||Active, DNP Aug. 9|
|CB Joey Porter Jr.||Left ankle||Aug. 5||Day to day||Active, LP Aug. 9|
|OLB Nick Herbig||Hip flexor||Aug. 5||Day to day||Active, LP Aug. 9|
|DL DeMarvin Leal||Left ankle||Aug. 2||Day to day||Active, LP Aug. 9|
|RB John Lovett||Undisclosed||Aug. 2||Day to day||Active, DNP Aug. 9|
|S Keanu Neal||Undisclosed||Aug. 2||Day to day||Active, LP Aug. 9|
|S Damontae Kazee||Left ankle||July 29||Week to week||Active, LP Aug. 9|
|WR Ja’Marcus Bradley||Hamstring||Aug. 4||Day to day||Injured reserve|
|CB Cory Trice||Right knee||Aug. 1||Out for season||Injured reserve|
|RB Alfonzo Graham||Torn right labrum||July 29||Out for season||Injured reserve|
|DT Renell Wren||Torn right Achilles tendon||May 17||Out for season||Injured reserve|