Share This Page

Steelers' Polamalu trim, fit as he arrives for OTAs

| Wednesday, May 22, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
Philip G. Pavely | Tribune-Review
Steelers safety Troy Polamalu during OTA's Tuesday, May 21, 2013, at the UPMC complex.
Philip G. Pavely | Tribune-Review
Steelers safety Troy Polamalu makes a catch during OTAs on Tuesday, May 21, 2013, at the UPMC complex.

For the first time in his career, Troy Polamalu felt like he suffered an injury that could have been prevented.

Now, the Steelers' veteran safety is going to extreme measures to make sure something such as a torn calf muscle never happens to him again.

After a request made by coach Mike Tomlin, Polamalu showed up for the start of Steelers' organized team activities for the second consecutive year Tuesday. But unlike a year ago, Polamalu is looking trim and fit.

“You can never really tell with Troy because he wears his clothes all baggy,” cornerback Ike Taylor joked.

After missing nine games and part of another with a torn calf, Polamalu has taken his offseason training and diet to a level that transformed his body into shape rivaling his college days at Southern Cal a decade ago.

“I have done quite a bit of different things this offseason,” Polamalu said. “There are a lot of different rehabs and training I am doing. I feel good, thank God.”

Polamalu's main concern has been the balky calf that he's been dealing with for the past four years. Polamalu injured the calf in Week 1 last year, then re-injured it four weeks later against Philadelphia. The injury kept him shelved for the next seven weeks.

Polamalu played only 400 snaps in 2012, one year after starting all 17 games (including playoffs) in 2011.

“I think last year was an injury that could've been avoided,” Polamalu said. “There are times when people fall on my knee, and those type of freak accidents that can't be avoided. Last year was the first injury of my career that could've been avoided.”

Polamalu, who hasn't committed to returning to OTAs past this week, is still working out in Southern California with renowned trainer Marv Marinovich. He added a physical therapist and a dietitian to his group of medical advisers.

“Time is not stale,” Polamalu said. “You have to continue to evolve as time evolves and your career evolves and your body evolves.”

Polamalu has developed scar tissue around his injured calf, which has presented a unique challenge this offseason.

“If you don't attack the problem of scar tissue, then you are going to continue to have problems,” Polamalu said.

Polamalu showed no effects of his injury during the first day of OTAs, especially when he snagged a Ben Roethlisberger pass with one hand for an interception.

“Troy is Troy, and you know what you are going to get,” Taylor said. “Just him being back around, it is good to have him.”

Mark Kaboly is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at mkaboly@tribweb.com or via Twitter @MarkKaboly_Trib.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.