The Steelers host the Jets on Sunday, and they are expected to do so without their star safety Troy Polamalu.
The team’s defense did not play well without Polamalu last season, but they may have to get used to it for the rest of this regular season. The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports Polamalu could sit out Pittsburgh’s remaining three games before the playoffs with his Achilles injury. He was limping noticeably late in last week’s game against the Bengals.
It sounds like the possibility has as much to do with logistics as caution. Pittsburgh faces Carolina on Thursday Night Football in Week 16, and Polamalu may not be ready by then. (They also may not need him against the Sons of Jimmy Clausen.)
In Week 17, the Steelers face the Browns in a game that could potentially be meaningless in terms of playoff positioning. (Although a lot of things could happen to change that in the mean time.)
Polamalu has made big plays in the last three games, which has put him in the Defensive Player of the Year discussion. But a slow start to the season (for him) and this injury late would seemingly ruin his chances.
The Steelers and Polamalu are more concerned about pointing towards the hardware you win on February 6.