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Steelers notebook: JuJu Smith-Schuster among players to exit practice early

August 12, 2018

Steelers safety Terrell Edmunds covers JuJu Smith-Shuster during practice Thursday, Aug. 2, 2018 at Saint Vincent College.

Wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster spent the final team portion of Steelers practice Saturday afternoon wearing an ice bag on his left knee.

Smith-Schuster had been bothered by knee soreness in offseason workouts. Darrius Heyward-Bey also left practice early for the second day in a row, leaving Justin Hunter as the only veteran receiver on the roster to finish the session.

Joe Haden didn’t participate in the team portion of practice, and second-year corner Brian Allen also didn’t finish practice.

Coach Mike Tomlin confirmed that outside linebacker Bud Dupree sustained a concussion Friday night, which kept him in concussion protocol Saturday.

Tomlin provided no updates for the growing number of injured players, including Antonio Brown (undisclosed), Vance McDonald (foot), T.J. Watt (hamstring), Marcus Tucker (foot/ankle), Chuks Okorafor (shoulder) and Coty Sensabaugh (back).

“I”m not going to stand up here and give you a laundry list,” Tomlin said, “because I’m going to be talking a long time at this time of the year.”

Ben Roethlisberger, Maurkice Pouncey and Cameron Heyward returned to practice after getting a day off Friday.

Lacking in depth

The Steelers released their first official depth chart, but it was strictly cosmetic since the NFL requires teams to provide one in advance of the first preseason game.

Le’Veon Bell was listed as the first-team running back although he isn’t attending training camp. Ramon Foster also was listed as the starting left guard despite his right knee injury that likely will keep him out the entire preseason.

The depth chart still listed Dupree at left outside linebacker and Watt on the right even though they swapped sides in organized team activities. Strong safety Morgan Burnett was the only newcomer listed as a starter. Linebacker Jon Bostic, also signed in free agency, was listed as Vince Williams’ backup, with Tyler Matakevich tabbed as the other starting inside linebacker.

Missing Munch

Offensive line coach Mike Munchak was absent from practice Saturday because he was attending the Pro Football Hall of Fame induction ceremonies in Canton, Ohio.

Munchak is a member of the Class of 2001. He is in his fifth season coaching the Steelers offensive line.

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