The Cincinnati Bengals are playing their first AFC North matchup this weekend against the Pittsburgh Steelers. While the Bengals are dealing with some minor injuries of their own, the Steelers will officially be without their best player.
Per ESPN’s Brooke Pryor, Pittsburgh announced edge defender T.J. Watt will not play Sunday.
Steelers announce TJ Watt is OUT vs. Bengals— Brooke Pryor (@bepryor) September 25, 2021
Watt, who is dealing with a groin injury, was listed as questionable on the team’s injury report Friday. He was limited for all three of Pittsburgh’s practices.
Pryor reported Friday that Watt could still play despite the limited practice attempts, but it seems like the Steelers are protecting him from further injury.
“Doesn’t matter how many reps I get throughout the week,” said Watt. “I was able to still run around here and do a lot of things that I need to do to keep the door open for Sunday. I’m excited to get the rest of today and tomorrow to continue to improve my body and see where I’m at on Sunday.”
Without Watt and Alex Highsmith, who is also out with a groin injury, the Steelers will be thin at outside linebacker for their 3-4 defensive scheme. Cameron Heyward and Melvin Ingram III will be the biggest threats for Cincinnati’s offensive line.
For more on Watt’s injury and whether it could linger beyond Week 3, watch our video preview of the game with Mark Bergin of the Bleav in Steelers podcast, which he co-hosts with former Steeler Ike Taylor:
You can also listen on iTunes or using the player below: