Steelers sign P Kapinos; TE Miller among players on the mend

PITTSBURGH -- The Pittsburgh Steelers have signed former Packers punter Jeremy Kapinos to replace the injured Daniel Sepulveda, who will miss the rest of the season with a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee.

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Kapinos was signed Tuesday following a tryout involving multiple punters. He averaged 43.8 yards on 66 punts last season for Green Bay, where he also spent part of the 2008 season. He was with the Colts for one game earlier this season, averaging 44.8 yards on four punts.

Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said Kapinos' experience punting in bad weather factored into signing him. The Steelers play their next three games on a newly resodded field at Heinz Field, then finish the season at Cleveland.

Sepulveda, injured against Baltimore on Sunday night, will have surgery Friday.

Tomlin also gave an injury update for the rest of his banged-up team.

Tight end Heath Miller is doubtful for Sunday's AFC North game against Cincinnati because of the concussion he sustained from a helmet hit by Ravens linebacker Jameel McClain.

"Heath Miller is experiencing the discomfort that goes along with concussions," Tomlin said Tuesday. "We'll see if it picks up as the week goes along. Of course, if we're going to err, we're going to err on the side of caution when it comes to players' health."

McClain was not penalized, but was fined $40,000 by the NFL on Monday for an illegal hit to the head of a defenseless receiver.

Tight end Matt Spaeth (concussion) has been cleared by doctors to return to practice Wednesday. While Spaeth is returning, right tackle Flozell Adams (high ankle sprain) is unlikely to play against Cincinnati (2-10).

Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, who had surgery Monday to repair a broken nose, will wear a face shield during practice for the Steelers (9-3).

"I'm sure there's going to be some level of discomfort," Tomlin said. "I don't think it's going to keep him out of football in any form or fashion."

Defensive end Aaron Smith (torn triceps tendon) has resumed lifting weights but won't be evaluated again for two weeks. He was hurt Oct. 24. The Steelers chose not to put him on the injured reserve list in case he healed in time for the playoffs.

Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press

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