Speaking Thursday, Steelers OC Randy Fichtner said James Conner (ankle) play without practicing.
Advice: Conner was held out again on Thursday. This is something teams frequently say but rarely follow through on. We would guess Conner needs to get in at least a limited session on Friday to have a realistic shot at returning against the Patriots.
Conner (right ankle sprain) missed practice again Thursday, though the Steelers still are not ruling out from playing Sunday against the Patriots.
Advice: Steelers offensive coordinator Randy Fichtner told reporters that Conner's extensive knowledge of the playbook would allow him to play this weekend even if he doesn't practice. The standout running back is still looking like a long shot to face New England, with rookie Jaylen Samuels Pittsburgh's best bet right now for fantasy value from the position.
James Conner (ankle) remained sidelined at Wednesday's practice.
Advice: It's not a good sign for Conner's Week 15 status. Conner may be dealing with a high-ankle sprain — a 2-4 week injury. Jaylen Samuels will get another start against the Patriots if Conner sits.
Steelers coach Mike Tomlin left the door open for James Conner (ankle) to play this week.
Advice: Tomlin basically said we will see when asked about Conner, but it is promising he did not simply rule out the running back. Even so, it will be a stretch for Conner to return this week. Jaylen Samuels operated as the clear lead back against the Raiders last week.
NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reports James Conner (ankle) could miss multiple weeks.
Advice: This isn't a huge surprise with Conner potentially dealing with a high-ankle sprain. The Steelers plan to be cautious with Conner, making him likely to miss at least another week. Jaylen Samuels will start in Conner's place and get the majority of carries against the Raiders. The Steelers should run a pass heavy scheme until Conner returns.
ESPN's Adam Schefter reports James Conner (ankle) has a chance to return in Week 15.
Advice: This conflicts with a previous report. Conner is potentially dealing with a high-ankle sprain, so we'd expect the Steelers to be cautious with him despite a big Week 15 matchup with the Patriots. Jaylen Samuels will start for however long Conner is out.
Steelers declared James Conner (ankle) inactive for Week 14 against the Raiders.
Advice: Conner did not practice at all this week, but there is reportedly a shot he returns for a big Week 15 game against the Patriots. Jaylen Samuels and Stevan Ridley will handle the backfield work with Conner sidelined. The Steelers also declared RT Marcus Gilbert (knee), QB Mason Rudolph, S Marcus Allen, OT Zach Banner, DE L.T. Walton, and OLB Ola Adeiyi out.
Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said James Conner (ankle) will not play Week 14 against the Raiders.
Advice: The Steelers initially believed Conner was only dealing with a contusion, but further tests revealed a sprain. There is some belief he is dealing with a high-ankle sprain, which would cause him to miss multiple games. Jaylen Samuels should take over as the starter with Stevan Ridley behind him on the depth chart. Samuels is now the top add for the week.