Big news out of Pittsburgh today as the Steelers took running back Rashard Mendenhall off the Physically Unable to Perform list. Mendenhall is only seven-and-a-half months departed from tearing an ACL. It has been widely reported by beat writers and assumed by even Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert that Mendenhall would start the regular season on the PUP list, which would sideline him for at least the first six games. Today's move means Mendenhall is ineligible for the PUP list and will be a part of the team's 53-man roster if he isn't put on injured reserve or released.
This ... changes ... everything.
I'm trying to figure out why the Steelers would do this when it was pretty obvious that Mendenhall wouldn't be close to ready for Week 1. Maybe the brass thinks that Mendenhall will only miss three or four games and that putting him on the regular-season PUP list would needlessly cost him two games.
So Mendy will be around come Sept. 9. I don't expect him to do much -- or anything at all -- in the first month, but we'll track his progress for the rest of camp since he's eligible to practice now. With Isaac Redman also banged up, this Steelers' running game should be considered off limits until we know more about the health of the team's top two RBs.