Will any Pittsburgh Steelers start training camp on the PUP List?
July 26th is a big day for the Pittsburgh Steelers. It’s the day both rookies and veterans report to Saint Vincent College in Latrobe, PA for their annual training camp. While there will be no shortage of news as players enter the dormitories of the college, the one aspect of the team which is vastly more important is the health of the team.
In other words, will there be any players who start camp on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) List?
With the Steelers being the last team in the league to report to training camp, other teams are already starting practice and making it public which players are not participating at the start camp.
Here is an example of this, via Adam Schefter of ESPN pertaining to the members of the Baltimore Ravens who are starting camp on the PUP list.
Baltimore placed five players on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list to start camp: running back J.K. Dobbins, fullback Patrick Ricard, cornerback Pepe Williams, defensive tackle Rayshad Nichols and wide receiver Mike Thomas.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) July 21, 2023
For the record, a player starting on the PUP list is not the end of the world. It simply means teams are wanting to ease them into the full workload of a typical practice. Often times these players are ones who were coming off some type of injury in the offseason and don’t want to experience a setback of any kind, jeopardizing the games which actually count.
With all that said, will there be any players for the Pittsburgh Steelers who will start on the PUP List? A few come to mind…
Holcomb was limited in his work during offseason workouts coming off his foot injury. The last thing the Steelers need is a setback at a position like ILB. While I’m hopeful Holcomb is healthy enough to practice, if he starts on PUP it could just be the Steelers playing it safe.
Calvin Austin III
Austin told reporters he is 100% healthy, but also admitted he hadn’t fully “let go” in terms of pushing himself to the limits. Again, the Steelers might just want to take is slow to ensure there isn’t a repeat of 2022 for Austin.
There have been no reports of Ogunjobi being banged up this offseason, but at the same time, the Steelers want to protect their investment. After giving Ogunjobi a 3-year deal this past offseason, the key is to ensure he is 100%, or as close as physically possible to 100%, at the start off the regular season. If he needs to be eased into things, so be it.
There are always those players who might be dealing with a muscle pull or an unknown injury which makes the news surprising when they start on the PUP list. The other side of this is the potential that the Steelers don’t have anyone start on the PUP list, and are a fully healthy group as the start of the 2023 season officially kicks off.
Wednesday can’t get here soon enough…