Steelers News

Tomlin Not Ready To Commit To Dirty Red Playing On Defense Against Texans

After suffering a shoulder injury in Week 13, Pittsburgh Steelers inside linebacker Tyler Matakevich missed the team’s Week 14 game against the Baltimore Ravens. Matakevich, however, returned on Sunday for the Steelers game against the New England Patriots and while he didn’t play any defensive snaps in that contest, he played a team-high 17 special teams snaps.

On Tuesday, Steelers head coach coach Mike Tomlin was asked about Matakevich during his weekly press conference and specifically if he would start seeing some defensive snaps this coming Monday against the Houston Texans.

“I dont know that,” Tomlin said. “We’ll see where this week’s work leads us and how he feels coming off of that performance again dealing with the less than ideal circumstances that he has from a health standpoint.”

When starting inside linebacker Ryan Shazier left the Week 13 game with his back injury, Matakevich was the player who replaced him in the defense before he ultimately left the contest injured. However, ahead of Matakevich suffering his shoulder injury he didn’t play overly great. With Shazier lost for the remainder season the Steelers immediately signed former draft pick, inside linebacker Sean Spence, to the roster and he has since played the lion’s share of defensive snaps at Shazier’s position in the team’s last two games.

Assuming Matakevich is completely over his shoulder injury come Monday it will be interesting to see if he winds up starting alongside fellow inside linebacker Vince Williams against the Texans. I’m guessing that he won’t and that he’ll continue to be the primary backup at both inside positions. We’ll see.

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