- Jamison Hensley, ESPN Staff Writer
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The Steelers' offensive line received some encouraging news when veteran left tackle Max Starks was removed from the physically unable to perform (PUP) list, according to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.
Starks, who tore his ACL in the playoff loss at Denver, won't practice until Friday and isn't expected to play in Sunday's preseason game against the Colts, the paper reported.
Starks' timetable to return has become a hot topic since second-round pick Mike Adams struggled in the season opener. Adams is out for a couple of weeks with a sprained knee, which has forced Marcus Gilbert to move from right to left tackle.
Taking Starks off the PUP list this early is a good sign that he will be available for the Sept. 9 season opener. Starks previously said that he wanted some playing time in the preseason, even though he has 80 starts in eight seasons with Pittsburgh.
"I didn't need it last year," Starks told reporters over the weekend. "But this is a new offense. It's a lot more confusing than I thought it would be. It's the same stuff, but the names [of the plays] and the way it's called is different. I'm always going, 'Oh, this play is old such-and-such.'"
The last couple of weeks will likely determine who will be the Steelers' starting left tackle at Denver in Week 1. Starks has to show he's fully recovered from knee surgery, and Adams has to prove he's better than how he played in the preseason opener.