Foster, Pouncey's wingman on the offensive line and confidant off the field, spoke with the injured center following surgery to repair his broken left fibula, and Foster said he expects Pouncey to be a candidate to return at some point this season.
"I think he's going to be designated to return," said Foster. "I think everything has to go in the right direction for him, but knowing him he's going to work his butt off to get back.
"He's in good spirits. We text. You can't get emotions through that but he was LOLing and stuff like that."
"I can't say he's using emojis," Foster said with a laugh. "He might not like that."
Entering Monday's surgery, doctors didn't know whether Pouncey would have to miss the entire season or would be able to begin a possible return in late November.
Foster believes it will be the latter, that the Steelers will put Pouncey on Injured Reserve with a designation to return.
The Steelers have a history of keeping spots open on their 53-man roster for the return of prominent players, such as Rod Woodson (1995) and Aaron Smith (2010). But the new rule allowing one player per team to return off Injured Reserve could mean the Steelers only have to keep Pouncey on the 53-man roster the day of final cuts. The Steelers could then fill the hole the next day if they wish.
Mike Tomlin will be available this evening for an update.