Heath Miller does not know the answer to your question. It is the same question he has been asked scores of times since the 15th game last season, the same one a gaggle of media asked him Tuesday.

When will he be ready to play football?

"It's too far away to speculate," said Miller, standing on the Steelers' practice field in his street clothes. "One thing I've learned with this thing, it's a long process, it's still going to be a long process. You don't know how your body reacts, is going to react moving forward with the new stuff. It's too early to tell."

The knee is a funny thing, especially when the torque of playing football on it rips apart three different ligaments. It happened to Miller in the next-to-last game of 2012 when the anterior cruciate, medial collateral and posterior cruciate ligaments tore in his right knee.

Dr. James Bradley repaired the ACL and MCL the same day the Steelers announced that their players voted Miller their most valuable player for 2012. Bradley decided it was better to allow the PCL to heal on its own.

"I'm pleased with everything I've been asked to do," said Miller. "I'm pleased, he's pleased with the way my knee's reacted. So, so far, so good."

This is new territory for Miller, who missed just four games in his eight-year career until he was forced to skip the 2012 finale. He became a starter immediately as a rookie in 2005 and last season was among his best. He led the team with 71 receptions, the first tight end to do that since Eric Green caught 63 in 1993.

"If you play this game long enough, you're not going to be healthy for your whole career," said Miller. "Guys who do that are few and far between. Major injury is bound to happen sooner or later, you just deal with it and move forward."

He's following doctor's orders, not trying to rush things. He's lifting weights and running, trying to get the strength back in the muscles.

"My ultimate goal, the most important goal is to be 100 percent, get this thing better no matter how long it takes. I think that's the overriding goal. I expect to be there."