The Pittsburgh Steelers enter Week 9 of the 2020 season with a 7-0 record. Additionally, their list of injured players continues to grow like their win column number and now includes two defensive line starters. On Tuesday, Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin updated the overall health of the team as they prepare to play the Dallas Cowboys on the road this coming Sunday.
“First, we’ve got a couple of guys that have missed some time who are scheduled to work without restrictions this week, which means they’ll be available for action,” Tomlin stated. “We’ll be glad to have them back. Those guys are Derek Watt and Jordan Dangerfield.”
Fullback Derrek Watt (fullback) dressed on Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens, but he did not see any action in that game. As for safety Jordan Dangerfield (quadricep), he was inactive on Sunday with his injury. To hear Tomlin talk on Tuesday, both players should be able to play on Sunday against the Cowboys.
Tomlin then addressed several other injured players.
“There were some injuries that happened in-game and player availability will be determined by their ability to work this week and the quality of that work,” Tomlin said. “That would be Tyson [Alualu] with his knee. Cam Heyward with his quad. Mike Hilton continues to work his way back from his shoulder injury. We’re more optimistic about Cam Heyward. It’s a wait and see regarding Tyson.”
Tyson Alualu (knee) and Cameron Heyward (knee), according to Tomlin on Tuesday, both sound like they could miss Sunday’s game against the Cowboys. If that’s the case, Tomlin made it known that several backup defensive linemen will be asked to step up and play more snaps.
“With a number of those guys being at the defensive line position, obviously we’ll be calling on a number of our guys at the depths at that position, Tomlin said Tuesday. “They’ll have an opportunity to rise up and play quality ball for us. We’ve seen a lot of that in recent weeks from Robert [Spillane] at the linebacker position. We’re going to have an opportunity with guys like Isaiah Buggs and Henry [Mondeaux], and maybe even Carlos Davis having an opportunity to rise up for us this week in potential replacement of a guy like Tyson and a guy like [Chris] Wormley, who’s down with injury.
Defensive linemen Isaiah Buggs and Henry Mondeaux both dressed and played a good number of snaps against the Ravens this past Sunday and there’s no reason to think that both won’t see action on Sunday against the Cowboys. As for rookie defensive tackle Carlos Davis, it’s possible that he dresses for the first time this season on Sunday against the Cowboys if both Alualu and Heyward don’t play in that contest.
Another payer who sat out injured this past Sunday, inside linebacker Ulysees Gilbert III (back), seems very questionable to play on Sunday against the Cowboys to start this week.
“We’ll see, Tomlin said of Gilbert possibly playing on Sunday against the Cowboys. “It depends on how his back behaves.”