Pro Bowl running back James Conner has missed each of the Pittsburgh Steelers past two games with a shoulder injury he suffered back in Week 8.
Since losing arguably their top offensive playmaker, the Steelers have struggled mightily to move the football in the ground game. Backup Jaylen Samuels averaged a putrid 1.65 yards per carry over his two-game stint as the replacement for the injured Conner.
Will the team have to endure another game without the services of Conner at their disposal? Or will the running back return, putting a team riding a four-game winning streak over the top? Signs seem positive at the moment.
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James Conner Set to Play on Thursday Night Football
Running back James Conner was removed from the team’s injury report on Wednesday and is set to make his much-welcomed return to the Pittsburgh Steelers lineup tonight, on Thursday Night Football.
Conner has been a bit of a disappointment in his second season as a full-time starter for Pittsburgh. The running back has averaged below 4.0 yards per carry for the first time in his career, including averaging 3.3 yards per carry or less in four of his seven games this year.
However, an uptick in production could be on the horizon for Conner, who will be gifted with a matchup against the division rival Cleveland Browns in Week 11.
In Conner’s two games against the Browns a season ago he totaled 181 yards and four touchdowns. The Browns have surrendered five total touchdowns to the running back position in four of their last five games. They are also just one game removed from being gashed by Phillip Lindsay for 92 rushing yards on just nine rushing attempts.
*For more details on Conner’s Thursday night outlook from a fantasy perspective click here.
Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Cleveland Browns Injury Report
The Pittsburgh Steelers will welcome back their starting running back James Conner on Thursday night. However, they will be thin behind him, as Benny Snell Jr. continues to miss time rehabbing from a minor knee surgery. Conner will also not have the benefit of having his lead blocker Roosevelt Nix clear the way for him, as he’s been ruled out with a knee injury of his own.
The Cleveland Browns will not have the services of defensive end Oliver Vernon for the second-consecutive week due to a lingering knee injury. The Browns will also be a man short in the secondary as Eric Murray has been ruled out with, you guessed it, a knee injury.
* Check out each team’s injury report below.
Pittsburgh Steelers Inactives
- QB – Paxton Lynch
- RB – Bennie Snell Jr.
- CB – Justin Layne
- LB – Anthony Chickillo
- OL – Chukwuma Okorafor
- TE – Zach Gentry
- DE – L.T. Walton
Cleveland Brown Inactives
- WR – Taywan Taylor
- S – Eric Murray
- DB – Robert Jackson
- DE – Olivier Vernon
- T – Kendall Lamm
- OL – Drew Forbes
- DE – Bryan Cox