PITTSBURGH — The Steelers will have many new players coming into the lineup in 2021. However, a few key players that were in the lineup to start the 2020 season but were knocked out prematurely due to injury are ramping up to return to the practice field. Both Devin Bush and Zach Banner, who had their seasons ended by Torn ACLs, were back on the field and practicing on Thursday. It is the first step in getting them back and ready for the Steelers’ Week 1 game against the Buffalo Bills.
“As for my rehab, as for Bush’s rehab, we’re all on schedule,” Banner said. “At the same time, if we get to camp, and they pull a day or pull a rep, it’s out of protection.”
Banner noted that he and Bush have developed a close relationship as they both have been rehabbing back to full strength. The two are now both inching their way onto the field.
“Bushy has been a tremendous mini-twin,” Banner said. “He works really hard. During this whole press conference, we’ve been talking about pressure, and he was a top-ten pick, and had an unfortunate non-contact injury. The hardest part about this process is getting back to being comfortable as you do heal. And I’m happy to say that we are both in that process.”
Banner specifically talked about how hard it was for him to sit on the sideline and not go full-go right out of the gate. Instead, the Steelers are taking it slow with both himself and Bush.
“I’m like a dog on a leash right now,” Banner said. “They keep pulling back. One thing you’re not going to have to tell me is to give effort and be there.”
Banner is clearly chomping at the bit to get back onto the football field in a bigger capacity, and he detailed the Steelers’ way of working him back slowly over the offseason.
“There’s a checklist that none of you have, that I have, that Coach Gie (Garrett Giemont) has, that Coach Tomlin has,” Banner said. “I’m not going out there and doing it 50 reps right now. Today with the guys I only got one or two, but I’m off on the side working myself. I remember a couple of weeks ago, when we got into the football stuff, like cutting and lateral direction, I did 35 pass sets.”
It appears that the Steelers are going at it cautiously with both Bush and Banner as it stands. However, both are on track to returning to the football field for the Steelers’ opener.