Steelers get TJ Watt back, but bad news continues on defense

Lyou Pittsburgh Steelers they had a bittersweet news Saturday: on the one hand they will recover their main pass-rusher TJ Watt, but on the other hand, they suffered an unexpected loss ahead of their game this Sunday against the New Orleans Saintsafter his safety probowler, Minkah Fitzpatrick miss several weeks due to emergency surgery for an appendectomy.

Minkah Fitzpatrick reported discomfort during practice this Saturday and after undergoing several tests, the doctors indicated that the appendix should be removed in an emergency surgery. Without knowing details of how long he could be out of the grid until now.

Fitzpatrick has three interceptions this season, one of them for a pick six. Earlier this week, the Steelers activated safety Damontae Kazee from the injured reserve list, which will surely help to have more depth at the position.

Fitzpatrick had already missed the game against Tampa Bay Buccaneers and was replaced by Three Norwood. The Steelers also activated safety Elijah Riley of the practice team.

For this Sunday, the Steelers previously ruled out the cornerbacks Ahkello Witherspoon and William Jackson III, who was placed on injured reserve with a persistent back injury.

The Steelers hope for a defensive upgrade with the return of TJ Watt

Despite Fitzpatrick’s injury, the team’s coach mike tomlinensure that the return of T. J. Watt help the defense put more pressure on opposing quarterbacks, an issue that has been instrumental in the poor performance of the black and gold team that marches in the AFC North basement at 2-6.

The Steelers lost Watt in Week 1 to a pectoral muscle injury in a painful win over the Steelers. Cincinnati Bengals.

Watt won the award for Defensive Player of the Year in 2021, so his return to the field will be essential for a team that has very few aspirations to advance to the playoffs. The Steelers they have lost six of seven games without Watt. In fact, the victory they won against Buccaneers it’s the only one they’ve gotten in 10 games without Watt since his rookie season.

A player who makes the difference

The Steelers hope to have their defensive role model as soon as this weekend. Watt managed to avoid surgery to repair his injury and through rehabilitation there was talk of an initial 6-week hiatus, which eventually turned into 9 weeks.

All in all, the news is good for the Steelers, because in 2021 Watt contributed 22.5 quarterback sacks, a record for the League. In his only game of the 2022 season, Watt had 6 tackles, 3 of them for loss of yards and a sack. Since his injury, the Steelers lost four games in a row, until their upset win over Tampa Bay in Week 6.

The return of Watt, a first-round draft pick in 2017 out of Wisconsin, represents a boost for the Los Angeles defense. Steelers. In his career he has accumulated 73 sacks, 300 tackles, 222 of them solo, five interceptions, 22 forced fumbles and seven fumble recoveries.

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Steelers get TJ Watt back, but bad news continues on defense