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Steelers notebook: Tomlin says Van Dyke's hamstring injury could be 'significant'

| Wednesday, July 31, 2013, 8:33 p.m.

• Cornerback DeMarcus Van Dyke's hamstring injury could be “significant,” according to coach Mike Tomlin — an injury that won't help his chances of making the team. Van Dyke was picked up from the Raiders last season mostly for special teams, but he played his way out of that job with multiple penalties.

• Defensive end Nick Williams, a seventh-round pick, has a knee injury that forced him out of practice Wednesday. Tomlin said cornerback Cortez Allen (knee) remains day to day, and cornerback Terry Hawthorne is out.

• Larry Foote re-signed with the Steelers this season, which meant that another linebacker didn't have to take over relaying the play call in the defensive huddle. Foote inherited the job from James Farrior. “That's a very difficult task. They (Farrior and Foote) didn't do it well when they first started doing it,” linebackers coach Keith Butler said. “James Farrior, it took him three years to get it down, but once he got it down, he got it down.”

• Linebacker Lawrence Timmons is offering some advice to first-round draft pick Jarvis Jones. “Definitely make yourself stand out,” Timmons said. “Be a good rusher and cover well in coverage against the tight ends, who he's going to play a lot against. Just be a student of the game.”

• Right guard David DeCastro was limited to a month of the regular season by a knee injury a year ago, but he doesn't feel like a rookie. “I definitely don't,” he said. “It's nice to not have to get up there and sing in the dining hall (like the rookies do) and do stupid stuff like that. You're more comfortable; you don't have to worry about the stuff you've already seen.

— Alan Robinson

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