The Steelers rarely make a splash in free agency, but they signed tight end Ladarius Green to a four-year, $20MM deal this offseason to replace the retired Heath Miller and to give Pittsburgh yet another dynamic offensive weapon. But Green landed on the PUP list in August, making him ineligible to practice with the team or join the active roster until after Week 6. Plus, there were reports this summer indicating that Green is suffering from the after-effects of multiple concussions, and that he has even contemplated retirement (though Green has refuted all such reports).
However, Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports reports that the Steelers expect Green to return soon. Apparently, it is Green’s preexisting ankle issue that has been the real source of his absence; as La Canfora notes, although Green has suffered from headaches since his time in San Diego, he is not in the league’s concussion protocol and is ready to pass a physical for the ankle injury and begin practicing.
La Canfora adds that Green has been working out on his own and, once activated, Green does not believe he would need more than a week or two to get game-ready (in fact, Mark Kaboly of DKPittsburghSports.com tweets that Green was working out on the field today prior to the Steelers’ matchup with Miami). When Green returns to the field, he would further boost a passing attack that is already among the league’s best.
Although Green was largely overshadowed by Antonio Gates during his tenure with the Chargers, he did flash high-level ability while on the West Coast, particularly when Gates was sidelined by injury. He set career highs in 2015 with 11 starts, 37 receptions, 429 receiving yards, and four touchdowns. All of those numbers could increase considerably over the course of a fully-healthy season in Pittsburgh.
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