The Pittsburgh Steelers have placed defensive lineman Tyson Alualu on the injured reserve list after he fractured his ankle in Sunday’s 26-17 loss to the Las Vegas Raiders.
Being placed on the injured reserve list means that Alualu must miss at least three games, though he is expected to be out even longer than that.
The team has not give a specific outlook for Alualu’s return, but the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported on Sunday that he will miss the rest of the season.
Alualu started each of the team’s first two games this season and 10 games in 2020 after making the move from primarily playing end in the Steelers’ base 3-4 defense to nose tackle. He also plays tackle in the team’s Nickel and Dime alignments.
Last year, Alualu had 38 tackles, four tackles for a loss, five quarterback hits and two sacks in 15 games.
The Steelers will replace Alualu with either Isaiah Buggs, who filled in on Sunday, or Carlos Davis, who is listed as the primary backup at nose tackle, but missed Sunday’s game with a knee injury. Buggs was a 2019 sixth-round pick while Davis was a seventh-round pick in 2020.
Chris Wormley had already been starting in place of Stephon Tuitt at defensive end. If Buggs shifts to tackle, that will move Isiahh Loudermilk and Henry Mondeaux, just recalled from the practice squad, into backup roles at end.