Steelers TE Matt Spaeth Might Return To Practice This Week

The last few weeks, Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin didn’t provide much in the way of an update on injured tight end Matt Spaeth, but that changed Tuesday during his weekly press conference.

“He hasn’t been evaluated yet today,” said Tomlin of Spaeth, who has been on the injured reserve list with the designated to return tag all season. “That evaluation is going to be important. We’ll take a look at where he is and let that be a guide in terms of his level of participation in terms of coming back to practice this week.

“We are at that point where it’s a legitimate discussion, but we’ll see what he looks like from a rehabilitation standpoint before we make that decision. Also, once we make that decision, we have 21 days to decide to activate him or no based on what we see. So we’ve got to be sure that when we put him on the field, we’ll take a look at him today and let that be our guide moving forward.”

Spaeth suffered a Lisfranc injury in training camp and has been sidelined ever since. According to Tomlin, it sounds like he might begin practicing on Wednesday if all goes well with his Tuesday evaluation.

The Steelers really could use Spaeth’s blocking in the running game as the team has been forced to use a tackle Mike Adams quite a bit in that role over the course of the last several weeks. Last season, Spaeth, who was with the Chicago Bears, was regarded as the best blocking tight end in the league by Pro Football Focus.