The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA


December 6, 2013

Woodley ready to return after missing past three weeks

PITTSBURGH — LaMarr Woodley is ready to get back to work. The Pittsburgh Steelers outside linebacker will play on Sunday against Miami after missing three weeks with a left calf strain.

Woodley expects to be back in his usual spot on the left side of Pittsburgh’s 3-4 defense. Jason Worilds, who played very well on the left side in Woodley’s absence, will move back to the right.

Worilds likely will see time on both sides when rookie Jarvis Jones rotates into the game. Woodley might even play a bit on the right.

“I’ll be starting on the left, but we’ll see what happens during the game as far as rotating and things like that,” Woodley said Friday. “(But) I’ll be starting. ... It was my third day of a full (practice), so I’m feeling great.”

Worilds has come on strong since replacing Woodley and leads the Steelers with six sacks and 23 quarterback pressures.

“I’ll start on the right, but I’ve played both the left and right sides this week,” Worilds said. “I’ve done really well on the left lately, but it doesn’t matter to me. Wherever they need me to play to help the team, that’s what I’ll do.”

Defensive end Brett Keisel had a setback after starting in Baltimore and playing eight snaps, and he is out this week for the third full game with a left foot injury. Left tackle Kelvin Beachum was limited Friday and is listed as doubtful, but said he won’t play.

Beachum will be replaced by Mike Adams, who began the season as the starting left tackle but was benched in October due to poor play. Adams is eager for a shot at redemption.

“I look forward to stepping in and helping my guys out,” Adams said. “I’ve had a lot of time to work on fundamentals, footwork and stuff like that, to improve stuff like that. I’ve definitely had a long while to work at it. It’s not really about changing things, it’s about improving things, just being more consistent, especially with my feet and hands. That’s what we’ve worked hard on every day, to just get better at what you do every day, every play.”

Right guard David DeCastro injured a foot against the Ravens. He was a full participant in practice Friday and is listed as probable, along with Adams, Woodley and running back Le’Veon Bell (concussion).

“I just needed a little rest, but I practiced today and should be ready to go for the game,” DeCastro said. “With me and Ramon (Foster) being in there, I think that makes it easier for Cody (new center Wallace). But he’s been here for a while, too, so he’ll be all right. And we’ll help Cody make the calls, which is what we’ve been doing since the season began. That way, we can all be on the same page.

“I feel good. I feel strong, and I’m ready to go.”

Nose tackle Steve McLendon (ankle) was limited in practice Friday and is listed as questionable. But McLendon said he felt good and believed he would start. If he can’t play, Al Woods should get the start, as he did at Baltimore. Woods also replaced McLendon after he was injured at Cleveland.

The Steelers (5-7) try to keep their flickering playoff hopes alive against Miami (6-6).

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