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Steelers Captain Enters NFL Concussion Protocol



Steelers DT Cam Heyward
Pittsburgh Steelers defensive tackle Cam Heyward in a game against the Indianapolis Colts on Dec. 16, 2023. -- Ed Thompson / Steelers Now

INDIANAPOLIS — The Pittsburgh Steelers took yet another injury blow to their defense, as defensive tackle and team captain Cam Heyward is in the NFL concussion protocol following the end of the team’s 30-13 loss to the Indianapolis Colts on Saturday, a team spokesperson announced at Lucas Oil Stadium.

Heyward was not obviously injured during play and was seen in the locker room after the game without any obvious discomfort. He played most of the game against the Colts, and was part of a defensive unit that gave up 30 consecutive points after the first quarter. Heyward finished the game with four tackles, one for a loss, tied for fourth on the team.

If Heyward misses time, he will likely be replaced by a combination of Montravius Adams and Keeanu Benton, as he was when he missed several weeks after a groin injury and core muscle surgery.

It’s been a miserable season for health in the Steelers defense, and Heyward landing in the concussion protocol was the injury was the second major one to a Steelers defender in the game. The Steelers lost starting free safety Minkah Fitzpatrick to a left knee injury in the second quarter. He was replaced by cornerback Patrick Peterson.

Heyward played his eighth game on Saturday. Fitzpatrick played his 10th, dealing with a hamstring injury and a broken hand. The number of full games they’ve played together has been near zero.

For the year, Heyward has 29 tackles and two sacks on the season, one of the lowest totals of his career in both categories at this point in the season.