JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Eight Pittsburgh Steelers players are not dressed for the team’s second preseason game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at TIAA Bank Field on Saturday.
Defensive lineman Cam Heyward (left ankle), fullback Derek Watt (shoulder), outside linebacker Alex Highsmith (ribs) and inside linebacker Marcus Allen (hamstring) are all not dressed for warmups. Heyward was injured in practice on Thursday.
Wide receiver Calvin Austin III (foot sprain), slot cornerback Arthur Maulet (hamstring), defensive tackle Montravius Adams (ankle) all did not participate in warmups. Tackle Joe Haeg also did not participate in warmups. His status is unknown, as he did not have a previously disclosed injury.
Starting running back Najee Harris is dressed for the second consecutive game, but is not expected to play.
With Heyward down, Chris Wormley will be elevated to a starting defensive end spot in the base defense. Larry Ogunjobi and Tyson Alualu will work the sub packages with the starters.
Genard Avery is expected to start at outside linebacker in place of Highsmith. Rookie tight end Connor Heyward will take any necessary fullback snaps.
Cameron Sutton will shift from outside as the starting Nickel cornerback, with Levi Wallace replacing him on the outside.
Outside linebacker T.J. Watt, wide receivers Chase Claypool and Diontae Johnson, tight end Pat Freiermuth and safety Minkah Fitzpatrick are all expected to make their preseason debuts for the Steelers.
The Steelers are expecting their starters playing in their second game to play at least the whole first quarter after largely working in two series in the opener last Saturday against Seattle. This is the first year the Steelers will have a three-game preseason. The NFL made the shift to three games in 2021, but the Steelers had a fourth game because they played in the Hall of Fame Game.
The Jaguars are playing in their third game on Saturday, as they played in this year’s Hall of Fame Game, losing to the Raiders.