Key Steelers starter goes down with worrying injury at practice
When you’re getting ready for a rematch with a team that torched you earlier in the season, the last thing you need is an injury.
But that’s the news out of Pittsburgh, as starting cornerback Artie Burns caused the heart of an entire city to skip a beat as the Steelers get ready to host Jacksonville for a trip to the AFC Championship game.
Steelers CB Artie Burns left practice after suffering a non-contact right knee injury, confirmed to @TheAthleticPIT by both Mike Hilton and Cam Sutton. Burns wasn't in the locker room following practice. Sutton would start if Burns can't go on Sunday.
— Mark Kaboly (@MarkKaboly) January 10, 2018
The dreaded non-contact injury is the bane of NFL teams. Usually, that means a torn ACL or something of the like.
Fortunately for the Steelers, that doesn’t seem to be the case, according to NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport.
This is true. I’m told the ligaments are intact. Quite a scare, though. https://t.co/RLNWQD6NPp
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) January 10, 2018
The second-year pro out of Miami appears to have dodged a major bullet, but there’s no word yet on whether he’ll be able to play Sunday.
Burns has been a stalwart in Pittsburgh’s secondary with 13 deflections on the season and 47 tackles.
Earlier this season, Burns made headlines around the league when he declared that he is sure that he’s already suffering from damage to his brain.
“I definitely know I have it,” said Burns, who is in his second season with the Steelers. “I’m going to [test positive for] CTE. I don’t need a test. Is it going to tell me how much I have? We play a physical sport, man. Humans are not made to run into each other.”
Regarding Wednesday’s injury, the relatively good news for Pittsburgh is their opponent.
Whether Burns plays or not, the Jacksonville offense has struggled to score points of late.
Blake Bortles was awful in last week’s 10-3 win against the Bills. The signal-caller completed only 12 of 23 passes for 87 yards and a touchdown.
Bortles actually had more yards on the ground (88) than through the air.
But don’t forget Jacksonville clubbed the Steelers in Pittsburgh 30-9 in Week 5, a game in which Ben Roethlisberger threw a career-high five interceptions. And Jacksonville’s defense is playing as well, if not better, than they were at that point in the season.
Of course, should the Steelers win, not having Burns the following week would be a problem for an expected rematch at New England.
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