Juju’s injury is the latest in a string of injuries to the Steelers’ wide receiver corps.
PITTSBURGH – The Pittsburgh Steelers are without one of their most reliable receivers for the remainder of the season.
Juju Smith-Schuster dislocated his shoulder on Sunday and will undergo surgery this week so he would be out for about four months, a source leaked to Adam schefter from ESPN.
Smith-Schuster, who signed a one-year contract to return to the Steelers was hit hard by Denver Broncos safety Kareem Jackson in the second quarter of Sunday’s 27-19 victory.
He got up slowly and was quickly assisted by the Steelers medical staff, who helped him out of the field with visible gestures of pain. After a brief check on the touchline, Smith-Schuster was immediately taken to the locker room, bypassing the blue tent where players are checked. He went to the hospital for a further evaluation, said coach Mike Tomlin.
“It’s hard to see him in that kind of pain, and that’s for anyone on the field, it’s hard to see someone hurt and be a key player for the offense,” Juju teammate Diontae Johnson confided on Monday.
Smith-Schuster is the team’s fourth goal below Najee Harris, Johnson and Chase Claypool. But throughout his career, Smith-Schuster was a dependable third-down weapon for Ben Roethlisberger, and he earned a reputation for being a brave and tough player.
Smith-Schuster, 24, has 323 receptions for 3,855 yards and 26 touchdowns in 63 games. over five campaigns. After nine touchdowns in 2020, Smith-Schuster has just one and on the ground so far this year. This was the second injury he suffered this season. Against the Las Vegas Raiders he was hurt in the ribs, but not a single game was lost.
The Smith-Schuster loss is a blow to a wide receiving corps, but one that hasn’t had healthy players since Pittsburgh’s Week 1 win over the Buffalo Bills. All receivers who made it to the roster after training camp, with the exception of Ray-Ray McCloud, have lost playing time through injury.
Before the Smith-Schuster injury, the Steelers lost James Washington, inactive due to a groin injury. The Steelers have already signed practice squad catcher Cody White, opting to sign him before Sunday’s game rather than temporarily promoting him to the active roster.
“There are going to be injuries,” Johnson said. “So Ray-Ray has to step forward, and that’s how it has always been: one person falls, someone has to intervene, and everyone is capable. [de contribuir a la ofensiva]”.
“We are going to go out and play for JuJu. We will go out and do our thing on Sundays and prepare for this week.”