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Steelers Gameday

Steelers CB Mike Hilton Out vs. Ravens; S Antoine Brooks to Make NFL Debut

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BALTIMORE — Nickel cornerback Mike Hilton will not be dressed for the Steelers game against the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium on Sunday.

Hilton, who had been listed as questionable with a shoulder injury, will be inactive for the second straight week. Hilton injured his shoulder in the Steelers’ Week 6 win over the Cleveland Browns. He will again be replaced in the Steelers’ Nickel defense by cornerback Cam Sutton, with Justin Layne filling in for Sutton as the Dime back.

Inside linebacker Ulysees Gilbert III (back) and safety Jordan Dangerfield (quad) had both already been ruled out for the game.

Fullback Derek Watt, who was questionable with a hamstring strain, will dress. Linebacker Jayrone Elliott and safety Antoine Brooks, who were both elevated from the practice squad for the game, are also active. Brooks, a native of nearby Lantham, Maryland and a University of Maryland alum, will be making his NFL debut. He was the Steelers’ sixth-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft.

Pittsburgh Steelers safety Antoine Brooks Jr. (25) practices at the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex preparing for a Week 3 matchup against the Houston Texans, Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020 in Pittsburgh, PA. (Karl Roser / Pittsburgh Steelers)

Running back Trey Edmunds, who was promoted from the practice squad to the 53-man roster this week, is also active.

Brooks, Edmunds and Elliott will all help replace Dangerfield and Gilbert on special teams. It’s unclear who will take Gilbert’s role in sub package defenses. He played in that role in Steelers Week 7 win over the Tennessee Titans while replacing Devin Bush, who is out for the season. Hybrid safety Marcus Allen and base-defense linebackers Robert Spillane and Vince Williams are the most likely options.

The Steelers’ healthy scratches are quarterback Josh Dobbs, defensive tackle Carlos Davis, offensive lineman Derwin Gray and tight end Zach Gentry.

Steelers Gameday

Alex Highsmith Needs MRI after Ankle Injury Suffered vs. Browns

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PITTSBURGH — Steelers rookie linebacker Alex Highsmith suffered an ankle injury that will require an MRI in Sunday’s playoff loss to the Cleveland Browns.

Highsmith left the game in the first half and was seen limping on the Pittsburgh sideline. He made an attempt to return to the game, but was unable to continue playing and did not see the field at all in the second half.

In-game, the Steelers announced that Highsmith was doubtful to return with an ankle injury. After the fact, head coach Mike Tomlin said that Highsmith suffered a high ankle sprain. Highsmith’s father posted on Twitter early on Monday morning that Highsmith will require an MRI on his injured ankle.

Given that Highsmith was able to walk and even run in short bursts after the injury, it does not seem likely that it will impact his offseason training plans.

The team’s third-round draft pick out of Charlotte, Highsmith was thrust into a starting role after starting outside linebacker Bud Dupree suffered  an ACL injury that required surgery.

On the season, Highsmith played in 16 regular season game and made five starts. He finished with 48 tackles, five for a loss, six quarterback hits, one interception and one pass defended.

With Dupree set to become an unrestricted free agent and unlikely to return, Highsmith should be expected to retain his starting role in 2021.

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Steelers

Mike Tomlin Doesn’t Regret Punt, Will Talk to Ben Roethlisberger About Future

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Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin answers questions from the media following his team’s shocking defeat at the hands of the Browns in the playoffs. Tomlin explained why he decided to punt on a 4th and 1 in the 4th quarter while trailing by multiple scores. He also touched on the timeline for when he will talk to quarterback Ben Roethlisberger about his future with the team.

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Steelers Gameday

JuJu Smith-Schuster Says He Doesn’t Regret ‘Browns Is the Browns’ Comment

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PITTSBURGH — It was repeated so often in the five days between when JuJu Smith-Schuster said the phrase on Wednesday to Sunday night’s game at Heinz Field, that it nearly became the No. 1 talking point coming into the game.

“The Browns is the Browns.”

Before the game, after the game and probably during the game, many of the Browns made it clear that they had taken exception to Smith-Schuster’s characterization of the team.

Smith-Schuster said after the game that he had no regrets about what he said.

“You know, I don’t regret what I said,” Smith-Schuster said. “I said, ‘The Browns is the Browns.’ They came out and they played a hell of a game. You know, there’s been games where we feel we lose them and today wasn’t our night and hopefully the same Browns will show up next week against the same opponent and go out and do the same thing they did tonight and have a hell of a game.”

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