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Rashard Mendenhall steps up his practice work

Rashard Mendenhall,  Antonio Brown AP

It’s been a bit hard to gauge just where Steelers running back Rashard Mendenhall stands in his return from a torn ACL.

He practices during the week, but winds up listed as doubtful on Friday and then misses the game on Sunday as the Steelers go with Jonathan Dwyer, Isaac Redman and Chris Rainey out of the backfield. Mendenhall was listed as a full participant again this Wednesday and it sounds like things may actually be ramping up a bit toward a return to game action for Mendenhall. He’s taking contact for the first time and said that it felt good.

“It felt normal, it felt natural,” said Mendenhall, via the team’s website. “I was hit more in space, things like that, but no different than what I have done before. The defense was making more of an effort to hit so that was the difference. It’s just enough to get prepared for a game situation. You don’t prepare for it fully, that takes care of itself in the game. It’s about getting out of your comfort zone. It was cool. It was all good.”

The Steelers got linebacker Stevenson Sylvester, who has missed both of the first two games, back at practice on Wednesday, but linebacker James Harrison and safety Troy Polamalu remained sidelined. Running back Jonathan Dwyer also didn’t practice because of a turf toe injury and wide receivers Mike Wallace and Emmanuel Sanders were also non-participants in practice.

Wallace is listed as having a groin injury while Sanders is listed with a knee injury. It’s the first we’ve heard about either problem and we’ll find out later this week if there’s reason for concern or if the Steelers were just resting the wideouts.

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16 Responses to “Rashard Mendenhall steps up his practice work”
  1. mikealstott says: Sep 19, 2012 5:56 PM

    I can’t wait for Rashard to get back to 100%. When healthy is one of the best fumblers in the NFL…

  2. sweetwillie66 says: Sep 19, 2012 6:11 PM

    Jealous haters continue to hate.

  3. txxxchief says: Sep 19, 2012 6:12 PM

    Rashard knows he’d be back on the field full speed if it wasn’t for George Bush, the CIA and possibly the Trilateral Commission. Seal Team 6 may also have had a role in “taking out” his ACL.

  4. sowcrates says: Sep 19, 2012 6:52 PM

    It could very easily be the blockers or the offensive game management that plays the most important role, but with how measly the YPCs have been on Redman and Dwyer, you can’t help but expect that Mendenhall would give you a bit more…

    …but only if he’s healthy. Until a lack of running game appears to lose Pittsburgh a game outright, they’ll get him healthy and then give him the ball most of the time in the hopes of getting something north of 3 YPC

  5. randallflagg52 says: Sep 19, 2012 6:58 PM

    We don’t know the whole truth here, we never heard what his ACL has to say.

  6. farty5 says: Sep 19, 2012 7:05 PM

    I wonder if he’s still mourning Bin Laden?

  7. steelersownyou says: Sep 19, 2012 8:43 PM

    @randallflagg52..you need to worry about your ravens..suggs achilles was talking and it said “see ya next year” 9-7 you will be. Better start dealing with it rarbird!

  8. stoogy says: Sep 19, 2012 10:02 PM

    He is trash. Never was any good after Lewis shattered his shoulder

  9. sudz28 says: Sep 20, 2012 8:20 AM

    Forget the ACL. He’s been a middle-of-the-road running back his entire time with the Steelers, even before any ACL issues. It’s high time to cut our losses and move on. He’s always be a decent, serviceable guy to give a primary back a breather but he’s no game changer.

  10. karla36 says: Sep 20, 2012 8:21 AM

    On a lighter note…I sure hope Richard Seymour gets a shot a Pig Ben again!!!

  11. crownofthehelmet says: Sep 20, 2012 10:28 AM

    karla36 says:

    On a lighter note…I sure hope Richard Seymour gets a shot a Pig Ben again!!!
    ———————————————————-
    I’m sure Ben does too – get 15 yards and opposing player ejected, just for taking a push to the chin (wasn’t even a punch).

  12. ravenator says: Sep 20, 2012 10:49 AM

    Does it even matter. This team is so old and overpaid with all their declining talent. Sucks they can’t manage to pay guys in their prime

  13. mmmpierogi says: Sep 20, 2012 12:42 PM

    ravenator says: Sep 20, 2012 10:49 AM

    Does it even matter. This team is so old and overpaid with all their declining talent. Sucks they can’t manage to pay guys in their prime

    ***********************************************************************

    Does it suck as bad as sticking your head in the sand and blindly trying to defend an inconsistent-but-middling-at-best QB as being elite? Looked pretty elite in the second half of the Eagles game this past weekend, didn’t he?

    Regarding age, the Steelers have nine players on their roster older than 30, whereas the Ravens have eight. At least know what you’re talking about if you’re going to be a troll.

  14. stoogy says: Sep 20, 2012 2:26 PM

    mmmpierogi
    Isnt that what you do with big baby ben? Try to convince yourself that he is elite, when he is just an average QB? He looked prety elite when tracy poter ran to the endzone for a pick 6.

  15. holeinone09 says: Sep 20, 2012 2:33 PM

    Most likely, the Steelers will be the only 2-1 team in the AFC North after this weekend, all alone at the top of the division. Have fun, haters.

  16. mmmpierogi says: Sep 20, 2012 6:28 PM

    stoogy says: Sep 20, 2012 2:26 PM
    mmmpierogi
    Isnt that what you do with big baby ben? Try to convince yourself that he is elite, when he is just an average QB? He looked prety elite when tracy poter ran to the endzone for a pick 6.
    ***********************************************************************
    #1. I made no claims whatsoever regarding Roethlisberger – you’re the one bringing him into it. I brought up Flacco in response to Raven fanboi mouth-running primarily given Raven fans recent (past half year) reactions concerning stories about Flacco and contract extensions. My confusion stems from why people believe that he should be paid like an “elite QB” (whatever that even means at this point) when he hasn’t consistently put up numbers like one. None of that has anything to do whatsoever with Ben Roethlisberger, does it? Moving on…

    #2. Although you’re the one bringing Roethlisberger into the discussion, we can compare numbers between Roethlisberger and Flacco. Over the past few years, Flacco has end-of-season numbers not dissimilar with guys like Kolb, Hasselbeck, and Sanchez. Example: examine Flacco’s numbers in 2011 (yards/game, passer rating, completion %), and he’s comparable in most categories with those mentioned above, plus other QBs such as Colt McCoy and Rex Grossman. How often do you hear people refer to Sanchez, McCoy, or Grossman as being “elite?” Look then at Roethlisberger’s numbers, and see where he pans out in the distribution. He’s not always leaps-and-bounds beyond Flacco, but he generally performs better, and sometimes, quite a bit better.

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