The Pittsburgh Steelers will play the Baltimore Ravens Sunday afternoon at Heinz Field and if you’re like me, you’re counting down the hours until the game begins. As usual, I will attempt to project the seven inactives for every Steelers game of the 2019 season and below is my best guess as to which seven players won’t be given helmets Sunday afternoon against the Ravens.
Game inactives are officially announced 90 minutes before kickoff, so make sure you check back at that time to see the names of the players for both teams who will be sitting the game out.
Roosevelt Nix – We knew on Tuesday that Nix wouldn’t likely be ready to play Sunday against the Ravens as he continues to fight back from the knee injury he’s been dealing with since the first week of the season. Nix failed to practice all week once again and on Friday he was officially ruled out for the Sunday game against the Ravens on the team’s injury report. This will mark the fourth game that Nix has missed this season due to his knee injury.
Anthony Chickillo – On Friday the Steelers listed Chickillo as out for the team’s Sunday home game against the Ravens after he failed to practice all week due to the foot injury, he sustained during the week 2 loss to the Seattle Seahawks. This will mark the third game that Chickillo has missed with his foot injury and it should allow fellow outside linebacker Jayrone Elliott to get a helmet once again.
Isaiah Buggs – The Steelers rookie defensive lineman out of Alabama hasn’t dressed for a game this season and that’s unlikely to change on Sunday against the Ravens. The Steelers usually only dress five defensive lineman for games and the two backups so far this season have been defensive end Tyson Alualu and defensive tackle Daniel McCullers. Buggs will likely continue to be one of the Steelers weekly seven inactive players if the players ahead of him on the depth chart stay healthy
Fred Johnson – The Steelers young rookie undrafted guard out of Florida has yet to dress for a game this season and that’s unlikely to change on Sunday against the Ravens. The Steelers have plenty of healthy offensive linemen ahead of Johnson on the depth chart and with only seven of them expected to get helmets on Sunday at Heinz Field, Johnson will likely be on the inactive list once again.
Chukwuma Okorafor – Okorafor remains behind fellow Steelers tackle Zach Banner on the depth chart and that has resulted in him being one of the team’s seven inactive players every week. At this point, the only way Okorafor is likely to dress for a game in the coming weeks is if one of the Steelers starting tackles gets injured.
Justin Layne – While he did get a helmet the last two weeks, Layne, the Steelers second of two third-round draft picks this year, has barely seen the field any on special teams. He’s played just two special teams snaps in the last two games and with inside linebacker Vince Williams expected to return to the field on Sunday, Layne is likely to wind up back on the team’s inactive list like he was during the first two weeks of the season.
Donte Moncrief – After being one of the team’s seven inactive players in Week 3, Moncrief resumed dressing again in Week 4 and that’s mainly due to tight end Vance McDonald missing that Monday night game against the Cincinnati Bengals with a shoulder injury. With McDonald looking like he might be able to play Sunday against the Ravens, Moncrief could find himself back on the inactive list again and especially if the Steelers aren’t overly concerned about wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster and his injured toe. Smith-Schuster ended the week listed as questionable on the team’s injury report, but he did practice fully on Friday.