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Polamalu could participate in practice on 'limited basis'

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Tuesday, Oct. 6, 2009

Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said Troy Polamalu, who has missed the past three games with a left knee injury, could return to practice Tuesday on a limited basis but isn't sure whether the All-Pro safety will play Sunday at Detroit.

"Troy's been doing well and progressing well," Tomlin said. "He may participate in a limited basis tomorrow in practice with a brace on for individual (drills), to see how he runs around and changes direction. Last week, he ran some in a straight line to pretty solid reviews. We'll take another step to see where he is.

"What that means to his game participation is unclear at this point. We'll get him back out there on the practice field and see how he responds to that."

Tomlin also said that running back Willie Parker (turf toe) may be limited in the early part of the week, but stopped short of anointing Rashard Mendenhall the starter for the second consecutive game.

"We haven't pondered the division of labor to this point," Tomlin said. "The most important thing is to find out the level of availability of Willie and then we'll make that determination. At this point, the ball's in Rashard's hands until we get further information in regards to Willie Parker."

Other players who could be limited in practice this week are safety Ryan Clark (lower back strain), outside linebacker Andre Frazier (right shoulder AC sprain) and left guard Chris Kemoeatu (left ankle). Tomlin said tight end David Johnson (high ankle sprain) should return to practice this week.

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