Steelers linebacker Ola Adeniyi has left the team’s Thursday Night Football game against the Cleveland Browns with a concussion and will not return.
Adeniyi, the Steelers’ top backup at outside linebacker thanks to an injury to Anthony Chickillo, was injured on a punt coverage play after the Steelers’ first offensive drive of the game.
He was originally listed as questionable to return before being downgraded to out at halftime.
The second-year linebacker out of Toledo was limited in practice this week with a hip injury.
The Steelers signed outside linebacker Jay Elliot in order to relieve their crunch at the position before the game on Thursday. With Adeniyi out, he’s the only healthy backup available to spell starters Bud Dupree and T.J. Watt. Elliott did not practice with the team this week.
Steelers Injury Updates: David DeCastro to Practice; 3 Regulars Limited
Injured Steelers guard David DeCastro is expected to return to practice this week, head coach Mike Tomlin said on Tuesday, while three other players could be limited during the week of work.
DeCastro suffered a knee injury during a training camp scrimmage and has not practiced with the team since. Tomlin said that whether DeCastro will be able to play on Sunday against the Houston Texans will depend on how his participation in practice this week goes.
The Steelers first replaced DeCastro with veteran Stefen Wisniewski, before Wisniewski was injured against the New York Giants and replaced by rookie Kevin Dotson.
Tomlin also said that defensive lineman Tyson Alualu (knee contusion), linebacker Bud Dupree (shoulder discomfort) and wide receiver Diontae Johnson (toe) all could be limited in the early part of practice this week, but should be expected to play on Sunday.
MetLife Stadium Turf Draws Ire after Two More Knee Injuries following Zach Banner’s in Week 1
The Steelers victory over the New York Giants to open the 2020 season last Monday night was a painful one, as starting right tackle Zach Banner suffered a knee injury in the fourth quarter that ended his 2020 season.
A week and two more ACL injuries later, and the playing surface at MetLife Stadium in the Meadowlands has come under fire from some around the NFL.
San Francisco 49ers defensive starters Nick Bosa and Solomon Thomas both suffered apparent ACL injuries while playing the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium on Sunday, making three season-ending knee injuries on the surface over two games.
The playing surface at the stadium, which opened in 2010, was replaced once in 2016 and then again with new FieldTurf this offseason. That new surface has drawn some criticism from those that have played on it.
“I think the turf was pretty thick,” 49ers defensive lineman Arik Armstead said. “Guys seemed to be getting stuck in the ground more regularly. A bunch of guys went down, wasn’t real fun to be a part of.”
“I know that’s as many knee injuries and ankle stuff and people getting caught on the turf that I’ve ever been a part of,” 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan added. “From what I saw, the other team did, too. I know our players talked about it the entire game, just how sticky the turf was. I think that was the first time people played on it. That was something our guys were concerned about right away and the result definitely made that a lot stronger. Unfortunately, it’s a place we have to go back next week.”
Banner has not spoken to the media since his injury. He said on Twitter that he underwent surgery on Friday.
“Any time you play on turf, you always feel a little different,” Steelers defensive lineman Tyson Alualu said on Monday, but he did not say that he felt the turf at MetLife Stadium was worse than any of the other turf surfaces the Steelers have played on. Alualu said he suffered a minor ankle injury during the game. Steelers running back James Conner also injured his ankle early in the game and did not return.
NBC Sports reported that the NFL plans to look into the turf situation at the stadium.
Steelers Injury Updates: DeCastro and Wisniewski Out for Sunday
Pittsburgh Steelers guards David DeCastro (knee) and Stefen Wisniewski (pectoral muscle) both did not practice Friday and are listed as out for Sunday’s home opener against the Denver Broncos.
DeCastro has been hobbled for several weeks since injuring his knee in training camp and missed last week’s game against the New York Giants, while Wisniewski started Monday night, but left in the fourth quarter. Wisniewski was placed on the reserve/injured list Friday afternoon.
With both sidelined, rookie guard Kevin Dotson looks slated to make his first career start on Sunday.
James Conner (ankle) was a full participant in practice again Friday after leaving the season opener in the second quarter. By getting a feel for his health and receiving treatment, Conner believes he is “definitely trending in the right direction.”
With injuries forcing him to miss six games in 2019, Conner expressed frustration when speaking with the media Friday.
“(The injury) was frustrating, I wanted to be out there. We won the game, that is the most important thing,” he said. “I am not naïve. I know stuff happens. I am trying to do everything I can to stay healthy. I am going to stay in my lane and leave it in God’s hands and everything is going to be all right.”
Wide receivers Diontae Johnson (toe) and JuJu Smith-Schuster (foot), left tackle Alejandro Villanueva (illness) and defensive end Stephon Tuitt (Achilles) were also all full participants in practice on Friday. All had missed practice Wednesday with minor ailments, but have now participated two-straight days and are ready for Sunday.