Defensive end Eason on line for Steelers
After opening the year on the inactive list, Nick Eason did a good job filling in at defensive end when Travis Kirschke suffered a calf injury. Eason started three games but was back on the inactive list when Kirschke returned to the lineup against Baltimore.
Eason will be back at defensive end for Sunday's 1 p.m. game against Oakland at Heinz Field.
Kirschke, who was initially expected to miss 3-6 weeks, may have returned too soon. He is listed as doubtful on the team's injury report.
Kirschke will be joined on the sideline by safety Troy Polamalu, who didn't practice all week and is out with a knee injury.
Polamalu will miss his third consecutive game and seventh game this season. It's the largest number of games that Polamalu has missed because of injury since missing five in 2007.
» Left guard Chris Kemoeatu again was a full participant in practice and is expected to start against the Raiders after missing the last game with a medial collateral ligament (MCL) tear in his left knee.
» Despite the cold weather, the Steelers were outside yesterday for their final practice of the week. The team has been practicing inside on Fridays, even when the temperature has been warmer than it was yesterday.
» This will be Oakland's first visit to Heinz Field since the 2004 season opener. The Steelers won that game, 24-21.
2 — Losses for Steelers in eight road games in 2008.
4 — Losses for Steelers in six road games in 2009.
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