Report: Wheaton’s Pinky Finger Was Pretty Messed Up

If you are wondering why it took so long for Pittsburgh Steelers rookie wide receiver Markus Wheaton to return to practice on a full-time basis after suffering a broken pinky finger in the Week 4 loss to the Minnesota Vikings, Scott Brown of has the answer for you.

According to Brown, Wheaton’s smallest digit was so messed up that doctors had to rotate it in order to fix it and screws were needed to hold in place.

Wheaton, who continues to be mentored by veteran wide receiver Jerricho Cotchery while unable to play, practiced fully on Wednesday and is slated to play Sunday against the Buffalo Bills.

“I’m so excited,” said Wheaton, according to the report by Brown. “I love to play the game. Hopefully I can contribute to the team.”

Wheaton, who Cotchery referred to as a sponge on Thursday, has played all of 56 snaps on offense so far this year and has caught three passes for 26 yards. The Steelers will likely ease him back into playing time as he had yet to overtake his mentor on the depth chart prior to suffering the finger injury.

  • treeher

    He should play majority of snaps the rest of the season. We need him.

  • steeltown

    Welcome back

  • SteelersDepot

    Is this a joke? Who are you taking snaps away from?

  • SFIC

    He’ll take snaps away from Moye and to a lesser extent maybe a couple from Cotch….in other words he might get on the field for 10 plays…tops….how many times he’ll be throw to…????

  • Rubem Dornas

    I don’t know if I’m insane or this is just a matter of age by Jerricho, but why isn’t he the WR #2?

    He is stronger than the fragile Sanders, although slower. However, we have a fast guy in Brown. I think Sanders and Brown are so similar, maybe with Cotchery #2 things could go a little better.

  • steeltown

    I think its more a matter of position and matchup that is helping Cotchery, not to take anything away from Cotch, I love the guy, but I think Brown and Sanders get most of the coverage shifting their way leaving Cotch one on one in the slot. He’ll win that battle more often then not.

  • treeher

    Sanders won’t be here next year.

  • Aric Brown

    I agree… I see cotchery as “the one they forget about” Brown is assumed as the #1 focus of the defense… Sanders is probably viewed as a deep threat… and I’m sure defenses are still keying in on Heath… add all that up with our quality running back and the #3 receiver can slip under the radar

  • Aric Brown

    I agree put some of the kids out there to see what they got… I’d like to get as much playing time as possible for guys like Wheaton, Paulson, Moye, Jones, Worilds, Shamarko, Curtis Brown and Cortez Allen… find out if these guys are going to work or not… this season is over

  • SumnerYoung

    Wheaton should see 4-5 targets a game for the next 2 or 3 games, assuming he can get open. If he earns it with good play, he will see more targets per game as the season progresses. It will be interesting to see what he does on gameday over the next month.

  • whisn

    If wheaton can master the art of catching the ball with his eyes open, he’ll be a step up on Sanders from the get go.

  • Nolrog

    Take snaps from everyone and give them to the kid. See what he can do. If he play well enough, we can afford to let Sanders walk.

  • Cotch just scored 3 times “3”

  • 89 scored three touchdowns

  • gene mann

    Let him get healthy and play him down the stretch

  • Anthony Renzelli

    Whoa Whoa, you’re making it sound like we have some kind of high powered offensive attack lol

  • sean mcmartin

    Just get these guys some experience so they come ready to play on day one next season and know what to expect. and find out which ones can’t cut it now.

  • Aric Brown

    We should have one similar to that of the philadelphia eagles… the steelers have a ridiculous amount of speed and shiftiness in sanders and brown (DJAX/MACLIN) ol reliable Heath Miller (Celek) a running back with smooth cuts and patient running in Bell (Shady) and the guy that comes up big when you need him to in Cotchery (Jason Avant)

  • Aric Brown

    the biggest difference being Ben is nowhere near as mobile as he used to be and Vick/Foles (either one) isnt tough enough to play through a stubbed toe

  • r4kolb

    Living in the Eagles coverage area I can tell you Foles is not mobile at all. As far as Ben being mobile, I think part of the problem is Ben doesn’t tuck it and run when he sees he has the yardage needed in front of him. He always wants to look downfield for the big play. I guess that is the kink in Bens armor is too often he doesn’t want to take the short gain for 1st downs and instead always wants to go for the homerun.

  • r4kolb

    Is it just me or does it seem when Ben had Hines he threw a lot more short passes then he now does. I think Wallace and his speed messed up Ben because it seems he now thinks, go long, too much. You have to play to your strengths and I’d think our current starting receivers more like Hines and less like Wallace. Maybe Ben needs to watch game film on his O before Wallace was here. Short yardage and having a running game wins games too.

  • r4kolb

    Dave, Dave, Dave, I would suggest considering the season is in the toilet anyway taking them from Sanders. Unless you think they are going to resign him which I don’t. To be honest at this point I’d like to see more of Moye too. What have you got to lose?

  • The whole offense is designed for short routes???

  • Because he threatens no one down the seam. Kind of like Heath unless he is wide open he is not going to burn you.

  • r4kolb

    And yet Ben still looks deep when there is a wide open receiver for short yardage who could pick up the first down.

  • Games the season is not over until the last whistle in the last game. “You play to “win” the game”-Herm Edwards

  • r4kolb

    Well if that’s the case someone should let the Steelers know.

  • r4kolb

    “Playoffs? Don’t talk about playoffs. Are you kidding me? Playoffs? I’m just hoping we can win a game, another game.” Jim Mora

  • When you are consistently behind by 14 or more due to lets face it a bad defense. Any Quarterback is going to look deep more to get back in the game. He is not a check down minded QB.

  • r4kolb

    It’s not just a matter of check downs. It’s a matter of knowing your current receivers strengths and knowing your O lines weaknesses. I.E. your not going to have more then 3 secs to throw. Agree on consistently being behind. Plus Tomlin suks. Threw that in for you 🙂

  • Thanks keep that in mind if they come in next year and win the division. Not impossible they have holes to address, Baltimore is just as bad as they are. Cleveland will likely be breaking in there 21st or 22nd quarterback. And other than there mostly sound team. The Bengals have a terrible secondary outside of Leon Hall who will be coming off of a torn ACL. As well as Geno Atkins. They have one good linebacker, and a quarterback with a noodle arm. So they are not unbeatable.

  • AndyR34

    The rest of the games and all of your credibility…as a coach, as a team, and as a franchise.

  • r4kolb

    You’re right. By allowing your future players to grow in a season where you’re going nowhere your credibility would be lost. (Sarcasm) I think it would be smart to see what you have and align what you may need come draft day.