This is how Coach Mike Tomlin described the Steelers' injury situation during his weekly news conference:
"Chris Carter can be characterized as questionable with his hamstring strain. Troy Polamalu, the same thing with his hamstring strain, we'll see where the week takes us in terms of his participation. Maurkice Pouncey and Ben, both, are dealing with ankle sprains. They've worked tirelessly to get themselves back into playing shape, and we'll see where the week takes us. I think you need to characterize their availability as questionable at this point. Emmanuel Sanders, we're optimistic about his availability, but we'll let the week guide us. Ziggy Hood, who experienced a right groin strain during the game (against the Browns) appears to be recovering nicely. We expect him to participate, and the same thing can be said for LaMarr Woodley. And of course under the circumstances with James Harrison, it would benefit us to have LaMarr Woodley."
Tomlin also said that if Ben Roethlisberger is unable to play, the team would use the week of practice to get both Charlie Batch and Dennis Dixon ready for the game against the 49ers. Tomlin also said if Roethlisberger is to start next Monday night, he would have to be able to practice at some point during the week.
"If he's going to play, he's going to practice, at least that's my approach to it," said Tomlin. "I believe everybody who is going to participate is going to need physical repetitions."