PITTSBURGH — Pittsburgh Steelers inside linebacker Elandon Roberts says he is set to return from a pectoral injury to face the Baltimore Ravens in a must-win game this Saturday.
Roberts suffered the pec injury in the middle of the team’s Week 16 win over the Cincinnati Bengals, and missed the club’s Week 17 trip to face the Seattle Seahawks. That was the first game that Roberts had missed since the end of the 2020 season, and the hard-nosed linebacker said he’s not going to miss another one with the season on the line.
“I’m playing,” Roberts said Thursday.
Asked to elaborate about whether he’s still in pain, Roberts reiterated, “I’m playing.”
Roberts retuned to practice for the first time on Wednesday, and was once again out there for the team’s final practice of the week on Thursday. Roberts has been steadfast since the injury that he would find a way to return to the field.
The Steelers have been scrambling at inside linebacker since the midpoint of the season, and Roberts has been a key cog in keeping things stabilized.
He entered the season as one of three co-starters at the position, along with Cole Holcomb and Kwon Alexander. Holcomb was lost for the season with a knee injury and then Alexander lost for the year to an Achilles injury in consecutive weeks in November, leaving Roberts as the last man standing at the position.
Before Roberts’ injury, the team tried Blake Martinez, Mark Robinson and Mykal Walker at the position alongside of him, with little success, before giving Myles Jack a chance, after the former Steelers linebacker came out of retirement to re-join the team.
Jack steadied the ship, but got just one quarter of a game with Roberts, before he too was injured against the Bengals. Jack started and played every snap against the Seahawks with Roberts out.
Now it appears that those two will be able to get back together at linebacker for the regular season finale, and if the Steelers can win and get the help they need, the postseason.
Nick Farabaugh provided reporting from Pittsburgh.