Steelers WRs Ward, Cotchery set for Week 10
The Steelers' situation at receiver looks better Friday than it did earlier this week.
Hines Ward and Jerricho Cotchery practiced Thursday and are expected both to play Sunday in Cincinnati.
Ward was knocked out of last week's loss to the Baltimore Ravens with concussion-like symptoms. Cotchery didn't practice Wednesday because of a knee injury.
"They're getting better, and it looks like they're going to make it," Steelers offensive coordinator Bruce Arians said.
The Steelers don't have much margin for injury at the position.
Emmanuel Sanders recently had minor knee surgery and is expected to miss two to three weeks. Arnaz Battle, the special teams captain, has yet to practice because of a hamstring injury.
Ward is eager to return after missing all or part of the past two games with knee and head injuries.
The 14-year veteran left the Ravens game in the second quarter following a helmet-to-helmet hit by Ray Lewis. Ward lobbied to return, but the Steelers held him out as a precaution. Lewis was fined $20,000 for the hit.
When asked if it had been intentional, Ward shrugged.
"I tried to lunge backward to get the first down. I got hit in the back of the head. That's where you least expect it," he said. "It was helmet-to-helmet after seeing it. I was probably more shocked that Ryan (Clark) got fined because we as players thought it was a good hit."
Clark was fined $40,000 for unnecessary roughness for a hit on Ravens tight end Ed Dickson.
> > Outside linebacker LaMarr Woodley did not practice again because of a hamstring injury and likely will miss his second consecutive game. He said he is "day to day."
Strong safety Troy Polamalu did not practice for a second consecutive day because of a rib injury, but it is not believed to be serious.
Inside linebacker James Farrior remains on track to return from a two-game absence. Farrior (calf) has practiced both days this week. Inside linebacker Stevenson Sylvester (knee) returned to practice after sitting out Wednesday.
Outside linebacker James Harrison was limited in practice Thursday with a toe injury.
> > Guard/center Doug Legursky (toe) practiced for the second consecutive day. He is on track to return Sunday but not necessarily to the starting lineup.
Arians said the Steelers will stick with the starting five they have used for the past three games, with Chris Kemoeau and Ramon Foster at guard.
Legursky will serve as the top backup at center and guard.
"Now we don't have to worry about (center Maurkice) Pouncey getting hurt quite as bad," Arians said.