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‘We’ll be ready’: Cameron Hayward’s stern message amid Steelers’ TJ Watt injury blow

Steelers, Cameron Heyward, TJ Watt, Minkah Fitzpatrick

The Pittsburgh Steelers may have won their Week 1 matchup against the Cincinnati Bengals, but they lost a key player during the game. Reigning Defensive Player of the Year TJ Watt came up huge for them during the game. However, Watt came down with an injury during the game and had to leave the game.

Now, the Steelers have some serious injury concerns with TJ Watt. The team fears that their star edge rusher has suffered a torn pectoral muscle, which will keep him out for a significant amount of time. In the event that he’s out for a long time, though, Cameron Heyward said that the rest of the defense should be ready to step up. (via ESPN)

“Having TJ (Watt) out there definitely benefits us. He’s a leader. He’s the Defensive Player of the Year. However long it takes, other guys gotta step up. Alex (Highsmith) stepped up pretty good today. Malik (Reed) and Jamir (Jones) are coming along. We had to do some different stuff out there, but we rally around him. And when he gets back, we’ll be ready.”

TJ Watt has been the face of the Steelers defense ever since he was drafted by the team in 2017. The edge rusher has taken after his legendary brother, evoking shades of JJ Watt in the way he’s terrorized opposing quarterback. Joe Burrow experienced this first-hand, as he struggled against the Pittsburgh defense.

Pectoral injuries have a history of keeping players out for a long time due to the delicate nature of the injury. If the Steelers want to make it to the playoffs this season, they need to be prepared to play without TJ Watt for a long period. They have plenty of talent to survive without Watt, though: players like Heyward and safety Minkah Fitzpatrick came up huge for the defense during the Bengals game.