Safety Troy Polamalu missed the last two games with an ankle injury, but there is a chance he could be back on the field this week when the Steelers travel to Cleveland to take on the Browns.
"Troy is improving," said Coach Mike Tomlin. "We are going to look at him, watch him move a little bit here this week. It's not out of the realm of possibility that he can play this weekend. And if he is healthy, he will."
Polamalu isn't expected to practice on Wednesday or Thursday, but Tomlin is hoping he will return to practice on Friday and be evaluated then.
Running back Mewelde Moore is considered questionable at this point with a knee sprain. If he can't play, rookie Jonathan Dwyer would be active on Sunday, but it's too soon to rule Moore out.
Defensive end Aaron Smith isn't expected to play against the Browns, but is making progress and there is still hope he could return for the playoffs.
"Aaron Smith is a week better. We scanned him. He is healing nicely," said Tomlin. "Again he is pushing and lifting weights and is inching closer to practice participation and hopefully game participation here at some point."
Tomlin also provided the following injury update: "Bryant McFadden has a hip pointer. It may limit him at the early part of the week. LaMarr Woodley has some swelling on his left knee, same thing there. Jason Worilds was injured in the game; he has some swelling on his knee. It may limit him during the early portions of the week. And particularly with a young guy who is limited from a practice standpoint that would put his participation in question. We will see where the week takes us in regards to him."
Things have heated up in recent years in the rivalry between the Steelers and Baltimore Ravens in the AFC North, but that doesn't mean it's cooled off between the Steelers and Browns.
The two teams are separated by less than 150 miles and a road game means a team taking a bus trip, and not flying to the city.
"Anytime in the National Football League that you are getting on a bus to go play a game, man that is a pretty heated rivalry," said Tomlin. "Not many bus trips in the National Football League. Just from a proximity standpoint, it's unique. The history is what it is. Of course, two storied franchises, the fans. I think the close proximity and the history makes it what it is. "I like to have a rivalry with every team we play. That's just the nature of it. We have a rivalry versus the Ravens, versus the Bengals and the Browns, as far as I am concerned. That is just the nature of AFC North football. Their perceptions of the rivalry, I can't control."