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Old 07-29-2007, 04:17 AM   #1
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Default Holmes eases back into practice

Holmes eases back into practice
By Scott Brown
Sunday, July 29, 2007

Santonio Holmes said he is still not 100 percent, but the second-year wide receiver did take part in his first practice of training camp Saturday, albeit on a limited basis.
Holmes, who entered training camp No. 1 on the depth chart at split end, participated in some passing drills. Barring any setbacks, he will practice today.

"It's time," Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said. "He's going to do everything (today) so he can start catching up."

Holmes had been sidelined after undergoing a non-football medical procedure. He wore shoulder pads Saturday but practiced in shorts.

When asked if he will be able to wear football pants today, Holmes said, "I'm not sure about that right now. We'll see how it feels and the doctors will let me know if I should wear shorts or not."
Holmes and the Steelers have not disclosed what type of medical procedure he had done.

Both acknowledge that the Steelers' 2006 first-round draft pick needs to play catch-up.

Holmes, who caught 49 passes for 824 yards and two touchdowns last season, said the biggest challenge he faces is getting into football-playing shape.

Doing some things in practice yesterday at least gave the former Ohio State standout a start on that.

"Just getting an opportunity to get back on the field felt good," said Holmes, who is also a top candidate to return punts, along with Willie Reid. "I got tired of sitting around, waiting."

Injury update

Lawrence Timmons (groin), the team's first-round pick in April, didn't practice Saturday. Tomlin said the outside linebacker, who hasn't practiced since Thursday morning, is still day-to-day.

Rookie tight end Matt Spaeth is also day-to-day. Spaeth, the team's third-round pick, banged up his shoulder in practice Friday night and didn't practice yesterday. Tomlin said it was nothing serious.

The Steelers, meanwhile, continue to ease Verron Haynes back into practice. The veteran running back dressed in full pads for the second consecutive day yesterday and took part in some drills.

"He'll do some more (today)," Tomlin said.

This and that

The Steelers practice today from 2:55 to 5 p.m. It will be open to the public. ... Tomlin cancelled a practice scheduled for yesterday morning and instead had players watch tape from the previous night's practice. He said he wanted to get the players "off their feet" and reward them for how they practiced this week.
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