The Pittsburgh Steelers are now into the regular season, following the most unique offseason in the NFL since at least World War II. While it didn’t involve a player lockout, teams still did not have physical access to their players, though they were at least able to meet with them virtually.
Even training camp looked much different from the norm, and a big part of that was the fact that there will be no games along the way to prepare for. Their first football game of the year was to be the opener against the New York Giants.
As the season progresses, however, there will be a number of questions that arise on a daily basis, and we will do our best to try to raise attention to them as they come along, in an effort to both point them out and to create discussion
Questions like, how will the players who are in new positions this year going to perform? Will the rookies be able to contribute significantly? How will Ben Roethlisberger look—and the other quarterbacks as well? Now, we even have questions about whether or not players will be in quarantine.
These are the sorts of questions among many others that we have been exploring on a daily basis and will continue to do so. Football has become a year-round pastime and there is always a question to be asked, though there is rarely a concrete answer, as I’ve learned in my years of doing this.
Question: Will the Steelers get Mike Hilton back this week?
This was supposed to be cornerback Mike Hilton’s money season, but he has been missing out on some valuable playing time opportunities. In fact, he has missed the past four games, during which time Cameron Sutton has had the opportunity to make an impact, with three forced fumbles in that time (he also had an interception after Hilton was injured against the Cleveland Browns).
He has missed all of this time due to a shoulder injury, but he should be on his way back shortly. He was able to practice last week and in the middle of the week appeared to be on track to play, but evidently had a bit of a setback and ended up being inactive.
Considering how close he appears to have been, one would assume that he stands a fair chance of being able to return this week, and that should be a boost to their overall defense as one of their most complete defenders, capable of playing in coverage, against the run, and even blitzing.
In the four-plus games in which he did play this season, Hilton accumulated 29 tackles, including five for a loss, three sacks, five quarterback hits, an interception, and three passes defensed, in addition to a recovered fumble, in case you need a reminder of how he was playing. And he did that in a little over 200 defensive snaps.