Steelers' David DeCastro doubtful; Cameron Heyward, Vance McDonald likely to play vs. Chiefs
Maurkice Pouncey can be serious when called for. But his typical nature is to be joking around.
Asked if the All Pro running mate whom he lines up to the left of needs practice time the week of a game to perform, Pouncey deadpanned his answer.
“I am pretty sure he forgot how to play football,” Pouncey said of teammate David DeCastro.
DeCastro, the Steelers’ standout veteran right guard, on Friday completed a full practice week in which he did not participate at all because of a hand fracture suffered in last week’s tie at Cleveland.
DeCastro hasn’t been ruled out – he’s listed as doubtful on the Steelers’ official injury report – but it is rare for a player who has not practiced all week to play in that Sunday’s game.
“He’s taking it the right way, and the training staff is taking care of him,” Pouncey, a center, said of DeCastro. “I am pretty sure they have a plan in place.
“Dave’s… a strong-willed guy, but we will see what the training staff says. It’s all up to them.”
DeCastro has been spotted with a heavily-wrapped hand in the Steelers’ locker room this week. He said earlier in the week that swelling in his hand was intense and that needed to subside before a strategy for playing could be developed.
If DeCastro can’t play, B.J. Finney would make his first career start at right guard. Finney’s prior seven career starts were at either left guard or center; the Steelers are 7-0 when Finney starts, including 2-0 against the Chiefs.
Joining DeCastro in being listed as doubtful for Sunday’s home opener against the Kansas City Chiefs are cornerback Joe Haden (hamstring) and reserve defensive end Tyson Alualu (shoulder).
The news was better for All Pro defensive end Cameron Heyward (knee) and tight end Vance McDonald (foot), each of whom practiced fully for the second consecutive day and were listed as questionable.
Chris Adamski is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Chris at firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter @C_AdamskiTrib.