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Steelers Playoff Boost? NFL Insider Thinks Jaguars QB Trevor Lawrence Will Miss Game vs. Titans



Steelers Jaguars QB Trevor Lawrence
Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence hands the ball off in a game against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Oct. 30, 2023. -- Ed Thompson / Steelers Now

It’s looking like quarterback Trevor Lawrence might miss the Jacksonville Jaguars’ Week 18 game against the Tennessee Titans, which could be huge news for the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Lawrence has been dealing with shoulder and finger injuries and also missed his team’s Week 17 win over the Carolina Panthers. Lawrence was limited in both of the Jaguars’ practices so far this week.

NFL insider Ian Rapoport of NFL Network said on Thursday that it doesn’t seem likely to him that Lawrence will be able to play.

“It does seem like where Trevor Lawrence is at right now is throwing a little bit and trying to feel better,” Rapoport said. “Which really is not a great place to be when you’re talking about Thursday before what is essentially a playoff game, need to win. … The fact that Trevor Lawrence is not participating fully, the fact that he’s still trying to throw and see how he is, to me, just kind of reading the tea leaves here, it doesn’t seem like he’s in a great position to play.”

Lawrence has been backed up this season by C.J. Beathard who replaced him after Lawrence was injured on Dec. 24 at Tampa Bay and started last week against the Panthers.

On the season, Beathard has throw 53 passes, completing two for 349 yards and a touchdown. He has a 98.7 passer rating on the season. Lawrence only has an 89.1 rating.

It’s been an up-and-down season for the 2021 first overall pick. After breaking out in his second season in 2022, he’s taken a statistical step back in 2023.

The Jaguars are currently in first place in the AFC South, and must beat the Titans this Sunday to secure the division crown and a first-round home game. If the Jaguars lose, they could find themselves all the way out of the playoff picture.

Jacksonville is in a three-way tie with the Indianapolis Colts and Houston Texans for first place in the AFC South, and those teams play one another, so one of them is likely to win. The Jaguars are also a game behind the Buffalo Bills and tied with the Steelers for Wild Card position.

The Steelers have five potential paths to the playoffs, and two of them involve a Jaguars loss. The Steelers get in a with a win and a Jacksonville loss or tie. They also advance with a Jacksonville loss, a Denver Broncos win over the Las Vegas Raiders, and the Colts and Texans ending in any result other than tie.

The Steelers can also get help from the Buffalo Bills, or if they win and the Colts and Texans do tie.


1. Baltimore Ravens 13-3
2. Miami Dolphins 11-5
3. Kansas City Chiefs 10-6
4. Jacksonville Jaguars 9-7
5. Cleveland Browns 11-5
6. Buffalo Bills 10-6
7. Indianapolis Colts 9-7
8. Houston Texans 9-7
9. Pittsburgh Steelers 9-7
10. Denver Broncos 8-8
11. Cincinnati Bengals 8-8
12. Las Vegas Raiders 7-9
13. New York Jets 6-10
14. Tennessee Titans 5-11
15. Los Angeles Chargers 5-11
16. New England Patriots 4-12