Things continue to get worse for the Pittsburgh Steelers.
After dropping back-to-back games to the lowly Arizona Cardinals and New England Patriots to go from 7-4 to 7-6, Pittsburgh’s road to the playoffs may have gotten even tougher, as star pass rusher T.J. Watt was placed in concussion protocol Friday.
Watt reported his symptoms Friday morning, per ESPN, one day after Pittsburgh’s 21-18 loss to New England. Watt will have to be cleared by an independent neurologist before being able to return to play. Thanks to being on Thursday Night Football this week, Pittsburgh does not play again until next Saturday when they head to Indianapolis to take on the Colts.
Watt was kneed in the head by New England running back Ezekiel Elliott in the first quarter of Thursday’s loss and left the game for the next few plays but returned and was able to remain on the field for the majority of Pittsburgh’s defensive plays for the rest of the evening. Every NFL game has an independent concussion spotter on-site, so it seems like whatever symptoms Watt had immediately after the play weren’t enough to hold him out for the evening.
Watt has 14 sacks this season, which leads the Steelers, and is second in the NFL behind Khalil Mack of the Los Angeles Chargers who has 15.