Groin sidelines Chargers' Tomlinson vs. Steelers

PITTSBURGH -- San Diego Chargers running back LaDainian Tomlinson wasn't in uniform for Sunday's AFC divisional playoff game at the Steelers, sidelined by the detached tendon in his groin that kept him out of most of the previous week's upset of Indianapolis.

Tomlinson, who rushed for 1,110 yards during the season, was listed as doubtful as late as Friday, but there were few signs during the week that he would play. The 2006 NFL MVP has been one of the league's most durable and productive rushers, gaining more than 1,000 yards in each of his eight NFL seasons.

Tomlinson played just over a quarter in the 23-17 overtime win against the Colts on Jan. 3, but didn't return after scoring on a 3-yard run early in the second quarter. He ran for 57 yards and the game's only touchdown on 18 carries in San Diego's 11-10 loss at Pittsburgh on Nov. 16.

The Chargers did activate tight end Antonio Gates (ankle), who was previously listed as questionable, and kicker Nate Kaeding (groin, ankle). Kaeding missed practice Thursday and Friday after spraining his ankle in practice Wednesday.

Tomlinson was replaced by Darren Sproles, who ran for 105 yards while totaling 328 yards against the Colts, the third most in NFL playoff history.

Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press

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