It was a scary few moments in practice when running back Fred Jackson went down at the tail end of a running play during Tuesday's practice and did not get back up. Jackson was stripped of the ball as he crossed the line of scrimmage during 11-on-11 work as Donte Whitner swooped in to make the play.
Whitner apparently hit Jackson right on his left wrist and thumb, which was heavily taped going into practice. The running back was in obvious pain after the play and stayed down while the athletic training staff tended to his injury.
Eventually he got to his feet and went to the training room about 45 minutes prior to the conclusion of practice.
"Fred got hit on the thumb and we're just hoping it's okay," said head coach Dick Jauron. "They took him in to look at it and they'll probably x-ray it too. I don't want to say it's the thumb because he had fine movement in his thumb. It was in the wrist area."
Jauron said Jackson's wrist had been sore and that the injured area was hit again on the running play.
The health of Jackson at the start of the season is critical knowing he will be the team's starting running back while Marshawn Lynch serves a three-game suspension.
Bell improvingA day after being carted off the field with a back injury, offensive tackle Demetrius Bell is doing better. That according to Dick Jauron.
"D. Bell is a lot better than he was yesterday," said Jauron. "He's a lot better than he was Monday so we're hopeful. I don't know if we're hopeful for this weekend, but he's feeling better."
Bell got a series with the starters last Saturday in the Green Bay preseason game in place of Langston Walker, but his status for the Pittsburgh game is up in the air. Once again undrafted rookie Nick Hennessey stepped in for him with the second unit.
HighlightsDefensively there were again several plays made on the ball. In fact through the first few series in 11-on-11 and in 7-on-7 there were eight pass breakups and an interception.
Among the players with pass breakups were Ellis Lankster (2), Reggie Corner (2), Ashton Youboty, Lydel Sargeant and Cary Harris. Safety George Wilson had the INT.
Also turning in defensive plays were Chris Kelsay who had a sack, Ko Simpson who had a pass breakup in the end zone to prevent a touchdown pass and Nic Harris had a sack as well.
On the offensive side of the ball there were a few big plays in the passing game. Lee Evans had two of them with a 30-yard catch by the near sideline on a nice looking touch pass by Trent Edwards.
Evans also had an acrobatic touchdown catch as he jumped and reached over Terrence McGee's head to pull in the pass.
Roscoe Parrish had a 35-yard touchdown reception from Edwards as he pulled in the over the shoulder pass in stride as he reached the end zone.
Jonathan Stupar had a touchdown catch during red zone work over the middle.
Ryan Fitzpatrick hooked up on a 20-yard pass play with Derek Fine down the seam.
Non-participantsNot participating in practice in addition to Bell and Owens were Drayton Florence, who was ruled out of Saturday's game, Felton Huggins, Aaron Schobel, Ashlee Palmer, Pat Thomas and Travis McCall.
James Hardy remains on PUP.