While he is not currently listed on the injury report, Pittsburgh Steelers third-year cornerback Cortez Allen is still having problems with the ankle injury that suffered in the season opener that resulted in him missing the next two games. With Allen still trying to get himself back into the form, there's a possibility that cornerback William Gay will start opposite Ike Taylor Sunday against the New York Jets.
"Yeah. He is right in the mix," said Steelers defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau following Thursday's practice when asked about Gay possibly starting. "They are all going to play. Cortez still has that ankle a little bit. Gay will play a lot."
Allen had a rough showing in his first game back against the Minnesota Vikings as he missed three tackles in the game and allowed five catches for 116 yards and two touchdowns.
So did Allen's ankle play a role in his poor play
"I don’t know that it totally affected him physically but maybe his timing a little bit, said LeBeau. "We all have to go through those things when we are coming back. He had a long spell in there that he was out."
On the first touchdown that Allen allowed to Vikings wide receiver Greg Jennings in the game, it certainly didn't look as though his ankle was slowing down as he was able to race down the field to attempt another tackle after missing his first attempt immediately following the completion.
As far as the angles and tackling form that Allen used in the game, yes, he looked rusty in both of those areas.
As for Gay, he has played well so far this season. He has yet to allow a touchdown on the 12 receptions he has given up so far this season and has two passes defensed and a forced fumble to his credit. Being as both Gay and Allen will see time in this game, the latter of the two will likely play the nickel slot role against the Jets.
"They are all good players," LeBeau said. "And you can’t have too many good players. I am glad we have them all."