Steelers notebook: Clark optimistic about playing Sunday
Fitted with his new, oversized helmet, safety Ryan Clark went through practice without issues Thursday as he tries to return from his second concussion in three weeks.
He still must pass additional post-concussion cognitive tests to be cleared to play Sunday.
“I'm playing,” Clark said. “But I've only pushed myself one day. I have to go back out there and push myself again.”
• The Steelers won't just be without Ben Roethlisberger. Receiver Antonio Brown (high ankle sprain) is expected to miss a second consecutive game. Without Brown to attract coverage attention, Mike Wallace and Emmanuel Sanders had trouble at times Monday gaining separation from the Chiefs' constant press coverage. “We've played without Ben before, played without key guys before, so we just want to continue to win,” running back Rashard Mendenhall said. “This game is going to be like that, and the end of the year it's not going to matter.”
• Defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau has had a healthy Troy Polamalu for only one game, and linebacker James Harrison hasn't been as productive as in the past as he fights through the aftereffects of a knee injury. Yet Ravens offensive coordinator Cam Cameron said it's the same old Steelers defense. “They're doing all the things they've always done well. They do a great job in disguising what they're doing,” Cameron said. “They are able to get pressure with four (pass rushers). They have some nice scheme things they do with their fifth rusher and sometimes their sixth. Like a lot of good offenses or defenses, you build a foundation, you build it with fundamentals so that if you do have injuries to a guy or two or three, you don't fall off the face of the earth. And that's what they've done.”
• Pittsburgh police said again the case of Redskins coach Mike Shanahan's supposedly missing $3,700 is closed. The Redskins filed a report that Shanahan's money and passport were missing from a Heinz Field locker following their Oct. 28 game there. The report was withdrawn after police were told a day later the items were found in a duffel bag. The Redskins subsequently issued a statement Wednesday saying the money wasn't recovered and an investigation was ongoing. However, Pittsburgh police said Thursday they were not investigating and considered the matter closed. The Steelers had no comment.
• Outside linebacker Chris Carter, who started the first three games, was placed on injured reserve with an abdominal strain. He can't return this season. Linebacker Marshall McFadden was promoted from the practice squad. Tight end Jamie McCoy returned to the practice squad.
• The Steelers have won five of their last seven at home against Baltimore but have dropped two of their past three. The Ravens drove the length of the field to beat the Steelers, 23-20, on a Joe Flacco to Torrey Smith touchdown pass in the final minute last season. The year before, it was a last-minute Flacco to T.J. Houshmandzadeh pass. But Ravens coach John Harbaugh won't say those two wins provide confidence going into the Sunday night game. “That's all stuff that is fun to write about, I guess, and maybe read about. But it doesn't mean that much to us,” Harbaugh said. “We are always confident. We are a confident football team no matter what.”
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