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Steelers HC Mike Tomlin provides updates on T.J. Watt, Alex Highsmith ahead of Week 14

Two of Pittsburgh’s defensive stars are currently in concussion protocol.

NFL: Arizona Cardinals at Pittsburgh Steelers Philip G. Pavely-USA TODAY Sports

The Steelers play on Saturday this week and are preparing for a pivotal AFC matchup against the Indianapolis Colts. Head Coach Mike Tomlin spoke to the media today instead of Tuesday and gave an update on the availability of many key players.

As most of us presumed, starting QB Kenny Pickett is out as he continues his recovery from ankle surgery. His current timeline remains largely unknown.

Unfortunately for Pittsburgh, their two starting outside linebackers both entered the concussion protocol following the team’s loss to the New England Patriots last Thursday Night.

When asked about TJ Watt and Alex Highsmith’s availability, Tomlin said “I don't have a lot of information there. I wait to hear from them in regard to those things.” When a player enters concussion protocol, they must be cleared by the team doctors and an independent neurological consultant before they suit up.

There is better news on the injury front for players who have recently been limited in practice, as Tomlin mentioned that LB Elandon Roberts, G Isaac Seumalo and RB Najee Harris will be aided by the extra time off.

“Guys like Isaac (Seumalo) and Najee (Harris) will probably have more extended in-helmet preparation,” said the Steelers much-maligned coach. Tomlin said that’s critical in a big week. “It’s a big component of what we do.”

Tomlin also mentioned that CB James Pierre has an opportunity to play.

The Steelers will look to bounce back on the road against a Colts team that also has a record of 7-6. Pittsburgh currently holds the sixth seed in the playoffs if it were to start today. It’s safe to say a loss to Indianapolis would be detrimental to their post-season chances.

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