The Pittsburgh Steelers’ defensive line has been dealing with injuries throughout the 2021 regular season. Whether you are talking about the mystery surrounding Stephon Tuitt, or Tyson Alualu, the defensive front has been far from dominant this year.
Needing help at the nose tackle position, the Steelers brought in Montravious Adams off the New Orleans Saints practice squad; however, Adams was placed on the Reserve/COVID-19 List leading up to Week 15 and won’t be available. It was thought Isaiah Buggs would be returning from an ankle injury to help bolster the middle of the defensive line.
Buggs was a full participant in practice Wednesday this week, but didn’t practice either Thursday or Friday before being labeled as questionable leading up to the Tennessee Titans game. Saturday morning it was announced by Steelers Public Relations director Burt Lauten the team has downgraded Buggs from questionable to out.
#Steelers DE Isaiah Buggs has been downgraded to OUT for Sunday's game vs. Tennessee.— Burt Lauten (@SteelersPRBurt) December 18, 2021
This puts a serious strain on the Steelers’ defense as they go against a Titans team who loves to run the football. The Titans won’t have Derrick Henry available as he continues to rehabilitate from a foot injury, but it doesn’t mean Tennessee will abandon the run. In fact, when you look at the matchup this Sunday at Heinz Field, the Steelers’ rush defense is so bad you would imagine every team’s approach when playing Pittsburgh would be to run the football.
Can the Steelers withstand this news? Who will play the nose tackle position? That will be a story to keep an eye on as the team prepares for the Titans at 1 p.m. ET at Heinz Field. Be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the team.