The Steelers are hurting at offensive tackle. Marvel Smith continues to be pestered by a pinched nerve in his shoulder that will keep him out for the fourth straight game. Mathias Nkwenti will have lower back surgery to dislodge a herniated disk from a nerve; he was placed on injured reserve Wednesday.
TE Mark Bruener must be in Bill Cowher's doghouse. After agreeing to a big contract reduction from a little over $2 million to $800,000, Bruener has been inactive three games and now won't start even though Jay Riemersma is hurt.