Those storylines have become so old and accepted over the years that nothing meaty was left for Steelers coach Mike Tomlin to discuss Tuesday at his weekly press conference, other than injuries. So here's the roll call:
"We're comfortable with what Trai Essex can do on the left side of the line, be it guard or tackle," said Tomlin.
* Right tackle Marcus Gilbert "looks like he'll be OK," Tomlin said. Gilbert has a sore left shoulder, but Tomlin anticipates him practicing and playing Sunday.
Tomlin said that depending on how the above scenarios play out this week, the Steelers would be "open to looking to bringing someone in." When pressed, Tomlin said that particular someone would be "just for practice purposes only. We don't anticipate bringing someone in who could help us win this football game."
Thus, Tomlin ruled out recalling either of last year's opening-day starting tackles Max Starks or Flozell Adams.
* Right defensive end Brett Keisel, who sprained a posterior cruciate ligament against Seattle, will be watched closely this week. Otherwise, Tomlin said he's not worried about the performance of the team's defensive line after the Colts rushed for 97 yards (4.6 avg.).
* Wide receiver Arnaz Battle is experiencing swelling in his right knee. He, like Keisel, will be monitored this week.
* Outside linebacker Chris Carter (hamstring soreness), wide receiver Jerricho Cotchery (hamstring), cornerback Bryant McFadden (hamstring) and wide receiver Mike Wallace (rib cartilage) all should be able to practice this week and thus play Sunday in Houston.
NOTE –Tomlin said he'll switch his one and only allowable practice in pads to Thursday in order to give the injured players another day to heal.