Steelers notebook: Polamalu practices, doubtful vs. Browns
• Steelers safety Troy Polamalu practiced Friday for the first time in seven weeks. He has missed eight games with an injured right calf and is doubtful for Sunday's game at Cleveland. Polamalu, who has played less than six quarters this season, saw limited practice time, and his calf was heavily wrapped afterward. The former NFL Defensive Player of the Year isn't expected to play and likely will be replaced in the lineup by Will Allen for the sixth consecutive game. Allen practiced despite a shoulder injury and is considered probable. Running back Isaac Redman (concussion), guard Willie Colon (knee), defensive end Ziggy Hood (back) and inside linebacker Stevenson Sylvester (hamstring) also are probable.
• Redman, who passed another series of concussion tests Friday, said he expects to play after rushing for 5 yards on one carry before being diagnosed with a concussion against Baltimore last weekend.
• Receiver Antonio Brown again was limited in practice with a high ankle sprain. He has missed the past two games and is listed as questionable. He said he expects to play.
• Quarterbacks Ben Roethlisberger (right shoulder and ribs) and Byron Leftwich (ribs); offensive tackle Marcus Gilbert (ankle) and receiver Jerricho Cotchery (ribs) are listed as out.
• Receiver Mike Wallace is hoping Browns cornerback Joe Haden returns from an oblique injury. The two will renew a rivalry that began in the SEC. Haden was listed as limited in practice Friday and is probable. “I like going against Joe,” said Wallace, who twice faced the former Florida All-American while at Ole Miss.
• The Steelers plan to replace the sod at Heinz Field beginning immediately after the Pitt-Rutgers game on the North Shore on Saturday, a team spokesman said.
• Defensive end Cam Heyward has a chance to show how much he's learned with Hood recovering from a back injury. He had two solo tackles against Baltimore, and played more aggressively than in the past. Heyward, a former No. 1 pick, is vying for playing time along with Steve McLendon and Al Woods. “I feel more confident when my number is called,” Heyward said.
Ralph N. Paulk is staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at email@example.com.