Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin was asked on Tuesday during his press conference about the Monday decision to place second-year tackle Marcus Gilbert on the injured reserve list and activation of rookie guard David DeCastro from the designated to return injured reserve list.
According to Tomlin, Gilbert never improved since injuring an ankle tendon in the loss to the Tennessee Titans back in Week 6 and that surgery is now an option for the Florida product.
“We gave him up to 6 or 7 weeks for that ankle to perk up. but we knew that there was a possibility that it would not,” said Tomlin. “It has not and surgery is a strong option and that of course required him to go on IR.”
Gilbert practiced on a limited basis the Thursday before the Monday night game against the Kansas City Chiefs, but has not worked since according to the injury reports. After suffering the injury Gilbert flew to North Carolina to see a specialist and it was determined at that time that the tendon would not require surgery.
As far as DeCastro goes, he has practiced just one week with the team after working for several weeks on the side with the trainers. DeCastro of course suffered a serious right knee injury in the preseason game against the Buffalo Bills, but the new designated to return rule for one player that was put into place this season enabled the Steelers to not end his season.
Tomlin talked about the Stanford product briefly on Tuesday.
“David DeCastro has been working here for over a week in terms of practice,” said Tomlin. “He\’s healthy enough to proceeded so we slotted him and moved him up and we\’ll just continue to work him in practice and see what he is capable of doing.”
It is unknown if DeCastro will be active on Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens, but the promotion of John Malecki from the practice squad on Monday is a strong indication that he might not be ready just yet.
For now Ramon Foster will continue to start at right guard and he will also serve as the third tackle on Sunday. Rookie Kelvin Beachum will start at right tackle with Mike Adams already being ruled out with an ankle injury suffered against the Cleveland Browns last week.