Will the Pittsburgh Steelers have starting cornerback Cameron Sunday on Sunday against the Denver Broncos? It certainly doesn’t sound like it according to what defensive coordinator Keith Butler said on Thursday during his weekly session with the media.
Butler was asked on Thursday if it’s going to take multiple different players to fill Sutton’s role on Sunday against the Broncos should the cornerback be unable to play in that contest due to groin injury suffered during the Week 4 game against the Green Bay Packers.
“Well, it depends on his [Sutton’s] health right now,” Butler said. “Right now, we can’t count on him to play. You gotta start using other people and practicing other people, and that’s what we’ve done so far. So, hopefully we’ll be okay. Cam is a smart guy for us. He plays several different roles for us. So, we’ve got several different guys who are going to have to fulfill that role.”
Who will those people that will be expected to help fill Sutton’s multiple roles in the defense on Sunday against the Broncos should the cornerback be unable to play?
“I ain’t telling you,” Butler said.
Should Sutton indeed wind up being unable to play on Sunday against the Broncos it would probably result in cornerback James Pierre getting the start opposite cornerback Joe Haden. From there, we could see rookie safety Tre Norwood get an increase in snaps in some sub packages, in addition to cornerback Arthur Maulet seeing some in other packages. Maulet played most the nickel cornerback snaps on Sunday against the Packers while Norwood played most of his snaps as the defenses dime defender.
If Sutton is inactive on Sunday, cornerback Ahkello Witherspoon would likely dress in his place. Either he or fellow cornerback Justin Layne would likely be used whenever the Steelers roll out their dime package on Sunday.
Due to injuries sustained so far this season, the Broncos are hurting when it comes to their pass catchers. They will enter Sunday’s game with just three players who have more than nine receptions so far season. Those three players are wide receiver Courtland Sutton (18), tight end Noah Fant (18) and wide receiver Tim Patrick (15).
The Broncos could be without starting quarterback Teddy Bridgewater as well on Sunday as he’s fighting through a concussion this week that he sustained last Sunday in the team’s loss to the Baltimore Ravens. If Bridgewater can’t play on Sunday against the Steelers, backup quarterback Drew Lock would likely get the start in his place.
The Thursday injury reports will be out later this afternoon. Sutton did not practice on Wednesday.