Shark Bites

Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger suffered a rib injury in the 1st half of Sunday's game against the Raiders. He remained in the locker room at halftime and is officially questionable to return. QB Josh Dobbs played the 1st series of the 2nd half. We'll update Roethlisberger's status when we learn more.

Update: Roethlisberger returned in the 4th quarter after Pittsburgh fell behind 17-14.

Steelers RB James Conner could remain sidelined for next weekend's game against the Patriots, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. Conner didn't practice at all this week and will be re-evaluated on Monday. We'll see what Pittsburgh's Conner-less backfield looks like against the Raiders today. It's worth noting that Rapoport said RB Jaylen Samuels will get the "bulk of the carries."

Steelers HC Mike Tomlin told reporters Tuesday that RB James Conner will miss Sunday's game at Oakland. Tomlin said the injury is more significant than originally believed, deeming it a sprain rather than a contusion. For what it's worth, Dr. David Chao tweeted Sunday night that it looked like a "mild" high-ankle sprain from his video review. Conner's absence will put rookie Jaylen Samuels and veteran Stevan Ridley in charge of the backfield. We're not likely to know ahead of time exactly how the work will be split. Samuels, who played multiple positions in college, is the more deft pass-catcher and higher-upside fantasy play between them. He scored Pittsburgh's final TD on a 10-yard reception Sunday night after Conner left. The Steelers have also promoted RB Trey Edmunds from the practice squad.

NFL Network's Ian Rapoport confirms that Steelers RB James Conner's lower-leg injury is "not considered major at all." He's reportedly dealing with just a contusion. "How much it swells will be telling," Rapoport adds. Conner avoided a long-term injury here, but he still shouldn't be considered a lock to be ready for Sunday's game against the Raiders. We'll keep a close eye on him all week. Conner's absence would leave Pittsburgh's backfield to Jaylen Samuels and Stevan Ridley.

Steelers RB James Conner left Sunday night's game on the team's final drive with an apparent right ankle injury. We'll watch for updates on his status. Rookie Jaylen Samuels replaced him and scored Pittsburgh's final TD on a 10-yard catch. He'd be the guy if Conner misses further time and is worth a look on waivers this week -- even if Conner returns for Week 14.

Update: HC Mike Tomlin called it a lower-leg contusion. We'll see about the severity, but that doesn't sound like an injury likely to cost him further game time.

Steelers TE Vance McDonald (hip) isn’t listed on the final Week 13 injury report. He sat out on Wednesday but was a full-go in Thursday and Friday’s practices. McDonald is a low-end TE1 play against a tough Chargers TE defense.

Steelers TE Vance McDonald (hip) was a full participant in Thursday's practice after sitting out Wednesday. He'll play on Sunday night but is a low-end fantasy starter vs. a tough Chargers TE defense.

Steelers HC Mike Tomlin said Tuesday that TE Vance McDonald has a hip injury that will limit him in practice early this week. It doesn't sound like McDonald is in danger of missing Sunday night's game against the Chargers, but we'll keep an eye on him this week.

The Steelers have ruled DE Stephon Tuitt out for Sunday's game at Jacksonville with an elbow injury. We'll see about his availability for the Week 12 trip to Denver.

Steelers RB James Conner (concussion) put in a full week of practice and isn’t listed on the final injury report. He’ll play his usual workhorse role against the Jaguars on Sunday. Conner is a matchup-proof RB1.

Steelers RB James Conner (concussion) put in a full practice on Wednesday. Barring a setback, he'll play against the Jaguars this weekend. Despite that tough matchup, Conner remains in RB1 territory in the Week 11 Rankings.

Steelers RB Le'Veon Bell did not report by today's 4 pm ET deadline and will not play this season. So ends the 2018 Bell saga. He ends up missing the entire campaign and forfeiting $14.5 million. The Steelers would owe Bell about $25 million if they franchise-tag him again next season, so he's fully expected to hit free agency in March. James Conner will serve as Pittsburgh's feature back the rest of this year.

Steelers HC Mike Tomlin said Tuesday that RB James Conner remains in the concussion protocol but is expected to practice tomorrow. All signs point to Conner getting cleared in time for Sunday's game in Jacksonville, but we'll continue to keep a close eye on his progress.

The Steelers are "optimistic" RB James Conner (concussion) will be ready for next weekend's game against the Jaguars, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. It sounds like Conner has already made some progress through the protocol. We'll keep a close eye on him throughout the upcoming week. A healthy Conner is locked in as a high-end RB1 the rest of the way with Le'Veon Bell not expected to show up.

Citing league sources, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports that RB Le’Veon Bell is expected to continue his holdout through the 2018 season. Bell will be officially unable to return this year if he fails to report to the team by Tuesday at 4pm. If you had plans to try and acquire Bell at a discount, turn your attention elsewhere. Meanwhile, James Conner will return to a workhorse role once he clears the concussion protocol.

Steelers RB James Conner is in the concussion protocol, HC Mike Tomlin announced after Thursday night's win over the Panthers. The relative good news is that Conner has 10 days to get cleared for Week 11's game against Jacksonville. We'll keep a close eye on his progress. If Conner can't play vs. the Jags -- and RB Le'Veon Bell doesn't show up -- Pittsburgh would be down to RBs Jaylen Samuels and Stevan Ridley.

Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger injured his right shoulder in the 4th quarter of Sunday's game in Baltimore. A Ravens DL landed right on him at the end of a scramble. Big Ben was down in obvious pain for a few minutes. We'll update his status when we learn more. QB Josh Dobbs is Pittsburgh's backup.

UPDATE: Roethlisberger returned after missing just 1 snap. The CBS crew reports that he just had the wind knocked out of him.

10:10am EDT 10/31/18

Steelers RB Le'Veon Bell has yet to report to the team as of Wednesday morning, according to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. It looks like Bell will sit out another game. Remember that he only needs to show for the final 6 games to accrue a year of service and hit free agency this offseason, so it makes sense for him to hold out until Week 12.

Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger fractured the index finger on his left hand on Sunday, insider Gerry Dulac reports. That's Roethlisberger's non-throwing hand. He's not expected to miss any time with the injury, and it shouldn't impact his passing. We'll see if he has any trouble taking snaps or handing the ball off.

Steelers S Morgan Burnett (groin) is set to play Sunday against the Browns after sitting out the past 4 games. The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports that rookie Terrell Edmunds will retain his starting job, so we'll see just how big a role Burnett finds.


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