The Pittsburgh Steelers defense was decimated by injuries in their 37-19 victory over the Carolina Panthers on Sunday Night Football. After losing starting cornerback Ike Taylor and outside linebacker Jarvis Jones for months, Ryan Shazier's injury became the burning question on fans' minds.
Mike Tomlin addressed the media Tuesday during his weekly news conference and stated that, although Shazier's knee sprain isn't as significant as once thought, the rookie linebacker has been ruled out for this week's game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Sean Spence will be filling in for Shazier in the starting rotation, but Tomlin wouldn't rule out Vince Williams as a potential option there, as well as at the inside linebacker position if needed.
To address the Steelers depth issues at outside linebacker, James Harrison was signed to shore up the backup outside linebacker role, as Arthur Moats slides into the starting right outside linebacker until Jones returns to the field in November.
Taylor's injury will have William Gay moving to the outside in base packages, but he'll continue to work the slot in sub-package football. Tomlin listed Antwon Blake, Brice McCain and B.W. Webb as viable options to fill the outside cornerback position when Gay moves into the slot.
Running back/wide receiver Dri Archer and guard Ramon Foster, who missed last week's game with ankle injuries, are expected to work their way back into their positions with the team barring any setbacks.
The Steelers face the Buccaneers this Sunday at 1:00 p.m. ET at Heinz Field.