Sean Spence participating in Steelers offseason workouts

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The Pittsburgh Steelers drafted Sean Spence in the third round of the 2012 NFL Draft with the hope he would add to the lineage of standout Steelers linebackers.

However, a gruesome knee injury in the 2012 preseason has kept Spence from appearing in a single game for the Steelers the last two seasons.

Spence suffered a torn ACL and LCL, a dislocated knee cap and nerve damage when he was blocked while chasing after Carolina Panthers backup quarterback Jimmy Clausen.

Spence returned to the practice field for the Steelers last October after beginning the season on the physically unable to perform list. After practicing for three weeks, Spence ultimately landed on injured reserve, officially ending his second season in the league.

However, Spence is continuing to progress toward a return that was once thought to require a “miraculous” recovery to even be possible.

According to Mark Kaboly of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Spence has participated in all six of the Steelers OTAs over the past two weeks.

“It is still a process,” Spence said. “This is just step one of coming out and competing and reacting off of other guys instead of cones. When I get to Latrobe (for training camp), I will be able to test it even more there.”

Head coach Mike Tomlin said in May he “can’t wait to watch” Spence play football again. Considering how close Spence’s career came to being over, making it back on the field for preseason games should be considered a major accomplishment. If he can make the roster, Spence may be able to give Pittsburgh an unexpected boost on defense.

21 responses to “Sean Spence participating in Steelers offseason workouts

  1. I like seeing this Spence will help make this defense better not only because of his talent but also his heart he can hopefully be an inspiration

  2. Oh, so good to see this guy even just getting back on the practice field again. It’s just one more step in an arduous two year long process, but it’s a big one. When he takes the game field for that first time, even for a preseason game, that’ll be an even bigger one. I don’t care what team you might cheer for, you should be cheering for Sean Spence too.

  3. Hats off to Spence for having the fortitude and determination to battle back from an injury that would have ended most guy’s careers. Nothing would make me happier than to see him out there in live action, contributing again.

  4. If he can get back to pre injury form you will have yourself a good player. Very instinctive and usually in the right place.

  5. Two years of rehab on a knee injury that was horrific and the guy is at OTA’s in something resembling playing shape. You gotta love the kid’s heart.

  6. The raven in me wishes the steelers 16 losses, but the Hurricane in me has been rooting for this guy to get back on the field.

    It’s all about the U baby.

  7. For all the negative stories out there about the NFL, the desire that this kid has to play in this league is commendable. It’s great to still hear good stories about some of these players. Wish him the best of luck.

  8. Here’s hoping that Sean can make meaningful contributions. It would be a wonderful comeback story! He must really have some talent for the Steelers to stick with him for 2 years.

    Also, frankly the Seahawks got spanked in SB40, plain and simple. They were lucky to even be in the game. They played way over their heads while the Steelers played way under their ability due possibly to overconfidence from being the obviously better and more talented team, and Seattle still lost. That game is over, in the books, done, finished. Funny how someone can cry for so many years in a row, over and over and over and over. Every time I see someone lamenting that Seattle loss, it makes my heart smile.

  9. I don’t think Willie Parker has stopped running, and he still hasn’t been touched.

  10. scoobies05 says:
    Jun 6, 2014 12:33 PM
    great story. I’m pulling for Spence to make it.

    I’m sure he appreciates it.

  11. It’s incredible how modern surgery has given this kid a second chance. If this injury happens even as recent as 10 years ago, there would be no chance for his return. Much respect to you Sean for having the determination to get back out there.

  12. Great to see Sean Spence back in the mix after 2 years of being injured. It should be some nice competition between him and Williams to fill the backup position. Inside lb is looking a whole lot better then last year and should become a strength on this team.

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