Byner recovers, is expected to start Sunday

November 16, 1991|By Vito Stellino

Washington Redskins running back Earnest Byner, declared by the club Monday to be out of tomorrow's game with the Pittsburgh Steelers with a knee injury, practiced yesterday and appears ready to start.

Offensive lineman Russ Grimm (ankle) and defensive lineman Charles Mann (knee) remained sidelined and are likely to miss the game.

Mann isn't expected to dress. Grimm will play only in an emergency. Jason Buck will replace Mann.

With Grimm ailing, the Redskins are likely to use their third of five moves off the injured-reserve list to activate offensive lineman Ed Simmons today. Ralph Tamm is likely to be waived to make room for Simmons.

Simmons, who opened the season as the starting right tackle, has missed eight games with a knee injury since going on IR on Sept. 11. Joe Jacoby has started in his place.

Coach Joe Gibbs said yesterday that Byner has made a remarkable recovery and that there's no reason he can't play.

Byner said he feels he can play, but he still has the knee heavily taped and it's uncertain how much action he'll see. Rookie Ricky Ervins will fill in if Byner can't go full time.

Gibbs said, "If he feels good on AstroTurf and warms up good and wants to start off, I'm going to let him start."

Meanwhile Steelers tight end Mike Mularkey will miss the game.

The Steelers also upgraded running back Barry Foster and safety Thomas Everett from questionable to probable, and activated rookie cornerback Shawn Vincent to replace the injured Delton Hall.

Mularkey, who injured his lower back in the Steelers' overtime win against the Cincinnati Bengals Sunday, has caught six passes for 67 yards this season.

Foster, who was nursing a bad ankle, and Everett, who has an injured shoulder, practiced with the team Thursday and Friday.

Vincent played in the Steelers' first four games this season before going on injured reserve Oct. 4 with an injured shoulder.

Hall, who injured his knee against the Bengals, was placed on injured reserve Thursday.

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