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Steelers notebook: Javon Hargrave said he didn't have concussion

Chris Adamski
| Monday, Aug. 21, 2017, 6:09 p.m.
The Steelers' Javon Hargrave plays against the Browns Sunday, Jan. 1, 2017 at Heinz Field.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
The Steelers' Javon Hargrave plays against the Browns Sunday, Jan. 1, 2017 at Heinz Field.

One Steelers player who had been announced as having a concussion Sunday said the next day he did not have one.

Another who had been held out of practice for previously unknown reasons acknowledged Monday he was in concussion protocol.

"I didn't have a concussion yesterday," nose tackle Javon Hargrave said. "They just got me in the protocol."

Hargrave left Sunday's preseason win against the Atlanta Falcons after playing just seven snaps. The team initially announced it was because Hargrave was "being evaluated for a possible concussion" and his return to the game was "questionable."

Early in the second half, the Steelers announced Hargrave was "out with a concussion."

Hargrave suffered a concussion during a December game last season as a rookie and missed the following week's contest. He also was evaluated for a concussion in the regular-season finale — meaningless to the Steelers at the time — but he returned to play in all three postseason games.

For guard Ramon Foster, it was the NFL's concussion protocol that kept him out of practice last week and also prevented him from playing against the Falcons.

"I'm out (of protocol) and good," Foster said Monday. "I had a little ding in the (Aug. 11) Giants game. It was delayed, so I ended up taking care of it. I saw the doctors and we're taking care of it and moving forward."

Dupree 'gonna be good'

Outside linebacker Bud Dupree said if Sunday's game had been a regular-season contest he would have played.

Out with an undisclosed injury that has been recurring throughout training camp, Dupree characterized his time off as precautionary in an effort to ensure he is at full strength for the season opener Sept. 10.

"I just to make sure I am all good," said Dupree, who began last season on injured reserve because of a back injury that limited him to seven regular-season games. "Just missing all those games last year is something I don't want to go through again."

Dupree said he expects to practice this week — the Steelers have two full workouts Wednesday and Thursday — and he intends on playing in the team's third preseason game Saturday at home against the Indianapolis Colts.

Rookie returns?

A pair of highly drafted rookies who missed Sunday's game each expressed a hopefulness to play Saturday. But both second-round receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster and third-round cornerback Cameron Sutton fell short of declaring they are healed from their respective injuries.

After missing about three weeks because of a right hamstring injury, Sutton said he "definitely will do more (at practice) this week" and he is "shooting (to play) Saturday."

"Just seeing how it is going throughout the week and, if all goes well, be ready Saturday," he said.

Smith-Schuster suffered a bone bruise in a shin last week during practice.

"I'm just ready for the doctors to clear me to play," he said. "For me, it's more of a mental thing, that I have to be out there and play. But at the same time, (the training personnel) know their work, they specialize in this, so whatever they say goes, you know?"

Smith-Schuster said "ice and rest" are all he needs for treatment.

Trainer's room

In other injury news, cornerback Greg Ducre was in walking crutches in the locker room with his left ankle wrapped. Ducre suffered the injury after downing a punt in the third quarter Sunday.

Also, backup quarterback Landry Jones said he will gradually ramp up his throwing during this week of practice. Jones said his abdominal injury was caused while throwing so he's taking his time to make sure it's healed to avoid risking an aggravation of the ailment.

"Right now, it's kind of a day-to-day deal," Jones said. "If I go out there too soon, I'm gonna hurt it again — and you never know what's going to happen after that."

Bell 'not going anywhere'

Hours after ESPN reported Le'Veon Bell was not expected to report to the Steelers and sign his franchise-player tender this week, Bell on Twitter responded to a fan's plea that he not "leave" the Steelers.

"I'm not goin anywhere unless they get rid of me," was posted to Bell's verified Twitter account.

Bell has not signed the $12.1 million tender, and NFL rules prohibit him playing this season under any other salary.

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