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Latest James Conner Practice Update is a Concerning Sign for the Steelers

PITTSBURGH, PA - OCTOBER 06:  James Conner #30 of the Pittsburgh Steelers warms up prior to the game against the Baltimore Ravens at Heinz Field on October 6, 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)
Joe Sargent/Getty Images

On Tuesday, Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin claimed he was confident that running back James Conner would return to the field this week against the Los Angeles Rams.

However, that likely won't end up being the case. It was reported Thursday that Conner is unlikely to play this week as he continues to deal with a shoulder injury, and his absence at Friday's practice suggests that the ailment isn't improving.

This doesn't appear to be a minor shoulder injury. Conner practiced in a limited capacity on Wednesday, but did not participate on Thursday or Friday. That's certainly not the positive progression Steelers fans were hoping for in regards to the health of their star running back.

Luckily for Pittsburgh, Jaylen Samuels and Trey Edmunds showed they can be a productive duo in the backfield, as they combined for 156 total yards against the Indianapolis Colts last week. So if Conner is unable to go, the Steelers will still be in good hands.

While Conner hasn't replicated his stellar sophomore season, he's still been effective in 2019. The 24-year-old has logged 97 carries for 380 yards and four rushing touchdowns, as well as two receiving touchdowns.