The Steelers activated linebacker Bud Dupree from the team’s Reserve/Injured Designated for Return List and promoted running back Daryl Richardson to the active roster from the practice squad on Saturday.
The team also placed defensive end Cameron Heyward and wide receiver Markus Wheaton on the team’s Reserve/Injured List.
Dupree, the Steelers No. 1 pick in 2015, was placed on the list Week 1 with an abdominal injury. He returned to practice last week and the Steelers had a 21-day window to make a decision on him.
Dupree played in all 16 games as a rookie, starting five of them, and had 25 tackles and four sacks. His return will be a boost for the Steelers’ pass rush.
“I feel good,” said Dupree. “I went out there this week and did what I can so I can make it for the game on Sunday. This week was a great week for me to go out with the team and give them as many defensive reps as I could. I already knew most of the plays. I have been in the meetings, so I am just refreshing things.”
Dupree said he feels he will get back into the game flow after a just a few snaps in there.
“I need to go through the motions, get hit a couple of times, take on a couple of blocks and I’ll be good,” said Dupree. “I am ready to get back out there and help out any way I can.”
Richardson appeared in the first three games of the 2016 season with Pittsburgh before being signed to the practice squad on Oct. 3.
Check out the best photos of LB Bud Dupree.
For Heyward, having his season end early is a huge disappointment. Prior to the 2016 season, Heyward hadn’t missed a game in his first five years in the NFL. He missed the Miami and New England games due to a hamstring injury, ending his streak of 85 consecutive games played.
Heyward, one of the Steelers’ defensive captains, leads the Steelers with three sacks, has four quarterback pressures and four passes defensed, 21 total tackles and a fumble recovery this season.
Heyward shared the news that his season was over via social media earlier this week, saying the following:
“I would like to thank everyone who has been in my corner this season. It pains me to say that I will not get to continue playing this season. My role will change as I can not play but it will not change the goals the team has set out. My support for this team will only grow and I look forward in watching this team grow and fight on. Hate being on the sideline but there is a greater plan taking place. My patience will be tested but I look forward to 2017. My hand will remain in the pile no matter what!”
Wheaton started in two of the three games he played in in 2016, recording four catches for 51 yards and a touchdown before suffering a shoulder injury.