The good news is that the Pittsburgh Steelers started their 2022 campaign with a victory over the division rival Cincinnati Bengals.
Unfortunately, it came with a price after reigning Defensive Player of the Year T.J. Watt exited with an injury.
He was visibly upset as he made his way to the Steelers’ sideline while holding onto his pec muscle.
Initially, it was suggested that he might require surgery.
However, that option was ruled out because letting it heal is enough.
But given the injury’s severity, they placed Watt on injured reserve.
The #Steelers have officially placed star TJ Watt on Injured Reserve, and he’s likely out for the next 6 weeks or so while he rehabs his torn pec muscle. They have signed LB David Anenih from the #Titans practice squad.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) September 15, 2022
NFL Network national insider Ian Rapoport tweeted, “The #Steelers have officially placed star TJ Watt on Injured Reserve, and he’s likely out for the next 6 weeks or so while he rehabs his torn pec muscle. They have signed LB David Anenih from the #Titans practice squad.”
It’s an unfortunate development for a player who tied Michael Strahan for the single-season sack record last year.
Watt also had a great game versus the Bengals with six tackles, a sack, and an interception.
Cause Of Concern For The Steelers?
It remains to be seen how Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin will address Watt’s absence.
However, their dynamic on defense will change without him.
Still, the Steelers have several stars on defense that can pull off a stop or a turnover.
They still have Cameron Heyward and Larry Ogunjobi up front.
Pittsburgh also has a nasty secondary with Ahkello Witherspoon and Minkah Fitzpatrick.
The Steelers will find a way to make it work when they face the New England Patriots in Week 2.