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Changing of the guard

Posted Sep 29, 2016

Chris Hubbard steps in for B.J. Finney, who had stepped in for Ramon Foster.

INURY LIST GROWS: Add left guard to the list of positions the Steelers have to sort out in advance of Sunday night’s hosting of Kansas City.

OG B.J. Finney, who had replaced Ramon Foster (chest) in the second quarter of Sunday afternoon’s 34-3 loss in Philadelphia, showed up on the Practice Report today as having had limited participation (finger).

In this instance, the next man up was OG Chris Hubbard.

“Same routine, just with the first group,” Hubbard said. “Felt good, another day to get better.

“I’m not sure what’s going on. I’m just playing a position I know I can play.”

Hubbard has appeared in eight regular-season games over the past two seasons (seven in 2015) after spending 2013 on the Steelers’ practice squad. He also played in both playoff games last season.

“I’m comfortable and I’m pretty sure these guys, I hope they believe in me,” Hubbard said. “You have to be ready at any moment. I think we’re all well prepared.”

FOSTER ON THE MEND: Foster doesn’t expect to be out of the lineup for an extended period.

“Just a bruised sternum,” he said. “I felt fine last week. I probably should have just sat back (and not played in Philadelphia). But that mentality sticks with me a little bit as far as wanting to go, no big deal.”

Foster thinks the position is in good hands in his absence.

“Two willing guys,” he said of Finney and Hubbard. “Hub’s a guy that’s been in the system for a while now. He knows what to do, how to do it and he also knows how to play.

“Finney’s a young guy that understands the importance of playing the position he’s going into, if it’s him or if it’s Hub. We’ll see on game day but I think their nerves will be fine.

“Tomorrow will tell a whole lot. Friday is one of those days that tells a lot as far as who’s going to go and who’s going to sit.”

A LOT ON THE LINE: The offensive line is in bounce-back mode this week after what happened against the Eagles.

“I’m trying to bounce back from the horrible game we had,” OT Alejandro Villanueva said. “It was just not a good performance by all of us and it starts with myself. It’s one of those things, you just have to get back and focus on what it is we’re trying to achieve this season. Obviously, the kind of performance we put out there is not going to let us get to our goals.”

Added C Maurkice Pouncey: “It’s football, man. I gotta pray to the football gods that it never happens again.”

WATCH AND LEARN: WR Markus Wheaton went over and over what he deemed to be a sub-par performance in Philadelphia.

“I’ve watched it a few times now,” he said. “I’ve been here before. I’ve had tough days. It’s  something you have to deal with and move forward.”

Wheaton is already headed in that direction in offensive coordinator Todd Haley’s estimation.

“Especially today, I thought he had a very good day,” Haley said.