Before they broke camp at St. Vincent College Friday, the Steelers made a surprise move in activating nose tackle Casey Hampton and running back Rashard Mendenhall from the physically unable to perform list.
Each veteran has been rehabilitating a torn ACL sustained in January. Mendenhall's right knee was injured in the Jan. 1 regular-season finale at Cleveland, while Hampton's left knee ligament was torn in the Jan. 8 playoff loss at Denver.
The Mendenhall move was particularly unexpected because the stress placed on the knee by lateral cuts typical of a running back usually results in a longer recovery time. It was widely expected he would begin the regular season on the PUP list. Throughout camp, both players - as well as coach Mike Tomlin - were vague when talking about timetables for return to practice.
Neither player will practice until Tuesday in Pittsburgh at the team facility. The Steelers (No. 7 in AP Pro32) hosts Indianapolis Sunday.