Skip to content

Steelers’ Hampton, Keisel, and Starks all have serious injuries

Pittsburgh Steelers v Cleveland Browns Getty Images

There were a lot of happy folks in New England last night when they found out the Patriots wouldn’t have to face the Steelers in the Divisional Round.

We’re not sure a banged-up Pittsburgh team would have really been a tougher matchup than the Broncos.

Pittsburgh’s devastating loss to Denver keeps getting worse. Coach Mike Tomlin revealed Monday via the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that nose tackle Casey Hampton and tackle Max Starks both have ACL injuries that may need surgery. While Tomlin wouldn’t confirm ACL tears yet, teams usually don’t say “ACL injury” unless the ligament is torn.

Defensive end Brett Keisel has a “severe” groin injury that may also require surgery. Center Maurkice Pouncey may also get work done on his ankle.

The Steelers defense showed its age on Saturday night. It’s worth wondering how much different that defense will look in 2012.

Permalink 80 Comments Feed for comments Latest Stories in: Pittsburgh Steelers, Rumor Mill, Top Stories
80 Responses to “Steelers’ Hampton, Keisel, and Starks all have serious injuries”
  1. jimmymcnultysbottleofjameson says: Jan 9, 2012 2:02 PM

    Keisel or Keisel’s beard has a groin injury?

  2. mattmillen4president says: Jan 9, 2012 2:02 PM

    Uh, with all of those injuries (plus Ryan Clark and Aaron Smith) I’d think they showed their inexperience.

  3. 1captain1 says: Jan 9, 2012 2:03 PM

    Let the Tebow Haters excuse begin in 3…2…1…

  4. virger says: Jan 9, 2012 2:05 PM

    at least they have a lot of time off

  5. tinkletinkleonyourstar says: Jan 9, 2012 2:06 PM

    do we really care about injuries to teams that are out of the playoffs??

    i think i heard vick had indigestion after dinner last night.
    WHO CARES!!

    btw, grizzly adams needs to shave.

  6. ampats says: Jan 9, 2012 2:10 PM

    Never was a concern about the Steelers coming to NE. It would be been enjoyable watching the Patriots blow the Steelers out in Foxborough.

    Anyway, the better team won last night.

  7. ebeg420 says: Jan 9, 2012 2:10 PM

    Well then I guess it’s a good time for those guys to watch the rest of the Playoffs from home, with the rest of the team.

  8. medtxpack says: Jan 9, 2012 2:11 PM

    they should get new younger talent all around…

  9. wicky888 says: Jan 9, 2012 2:11 PM

    It’s gonna be hard for those guys to golf with those serious injuries

  10. caseyanthonymunoz says: Jan 9, 2012 2:11 PM

    But what about Ben?! He was limping soooo hard for the camera. He must have been in unbelievable pain. What a warrior. See ya next year. Karma.

  11. southpaw2k says: Jan 9, 2012 2:11 PM

    Talk about adding injury to insult.

  12. pleasantsurpriselefty says: Jan 9, 2012 2:11 PM

    funny how one loss can take a team from the consensus AFC favorite to go to the SB to old and creaky. That said I’d much rather play a team I scored 41 on than a team I lost to. Don’t even have to conjure up a new game plan.

    may just be Pats year. Hire the guy who drafted the guys that just beat your biggest foe. He knows where the bodies are buried on the Broncos.

  13. unbiased8383 says: Jan 9, 2012 2:11 PM

    I don’t think it was age as much as over-aggressive play calling and injuries.

  14. deepthreat says: Jan 9, 2012 2:14 PM

    Yeah, all us Patriot fans are heaving a big sigh of relief… the Steelers looked soooo dominating the last month.

  15. ProDolphinsTalk says: Jan 9, 2012 2:14 PM

    After James Harrison destroyed E. Decker’s knee, the wrath of Tebow rained down and the once mighty Steelers were left broken, bloodied and embarrassed. Best game I’ve seen in years.

  16. blitzburgh43 says: Jan 9, 2012 2:15 PM

    Funny how well those old players looked while they were racking up 12 wins.

  17. cardmagnet says: Jan 9, 2012 2:16 PM

    No matter the severity of the injuries, I’d say that it’s all season ending…hardy har har.

  18. dickroy says: Jan 9, 2012 2:16 PM

    I’m sure the defense will look different in 2012.

    I sure do hope the offensive line looks a whole lot different in 2012!!

  19. mikeeg says: Jan 9, 2012 2:16 PM

    Dude, seriously get rid of the beard already…. This isnt sons of anarchy

  20. clamnewton says: Jan 9, 2012 2:18 PM

    I may be a Steeler hater, but I wouldn’t wish a “severe” groin injury on anyone. Ouch….

  21. mecheng04 says: Jan 9, 2012 2:18 PM

    After the way Harrison went after Eric Decker’s knee last night, all I can say is “Karma’s a …..”

  22. theshakeweight says: Jan 9, 2012 2:19 PM

    In other words they are not just faking a limp when the ESPN cameras are around…

  23. effedinLA says: Jan 9, 2012 2:19 PM

    Good thing they don’t have to play anymore this season. I’m sure they will be ready for the 2012 pre season.

  24. razzamuff says: Jan 9, 2012 2:21 PM

    “The Steelers defense showed its age on Saturday night.”

    ———-

    Yesterday was Saturday? Proof read your work Rosenthal!!

  25. pftcensorssuck says: Jan 9, 2012 2:21 PM

    Yeah, because the Steelers have given them so much trouble in the past.

    *rolls eyes*

  26. kpf1981 says: Jan 9, 2012 2:22 PM

    i don’t think they showed their age at all. coming into the game they had the #1 ranked defense in terms of yardage allowed, haven’t allowed a 100 yard receiver all year, were #1 against the pass, and #8 against the run.

    Unfortunately, there were a lot of injuries in 1 very important game but the replacement players did just fine. they were all defensive line players and the steelers still managed to stuff the run pretty good.

    The pass hurt the team more. Was it because they were stuffing the box? Most likely. Ike Taylor had his worst game of the season. You can blame that on scheme more than an old defense. You don’t compile the season long statistics the Steelers did by being old and slow. It was just a bad time to have a bad performance and I feel the defensive adjustments made were inadequate, not the players’ age.

    Furthermore, if they Steelers win the game the headline reads “Steelers Overcome Key Injuries, Beat Tebow with Backups”. It was a good game, probably the most exciting of the weekend. I wouldn’t jump to conclusions about the age of the defense. Does the team need to get younger and better? Absolutely, what team doesn’t? Do they have good young players on their roster? Absolutely. The Steelers will be just fine. It stinks that they lost, but the defense is just fine.

  27. 808raiderinparadise says: Jan 9, 2012 2:22 PM

    I heard Ike Taylor was serious hurt as well.

    Apparently he has 3rd degree burns.

    lol hahhahahahahhaha, im good.

  28. rc33 says: Jan 9, 2012 2:22 PM

    Rough 24 hour stretch for Steeler fans.
    I’d be particularly worried about Pouncey, who’s terrific but has missed postseason games the past two seasons.
    A chronically injured guy? Is his ankle going to a recurring problem?
    His replacement Legursky was fine in last year’s Super Bowl.
    Not so fine yesterday.

  29. metalhead65 says: Jan 9, 2012 2:23 PM

    Funny how being a old defense wasn’t a problem while being the number 1 defense during season. But losing to the broncos makes them old? Something tells me had they won their age would not have been mentioned

  30. vegaskid21 says: Jan 9, 2012 2:24 PM

    awww.. Did the big mean hairy man hurt his little wiwi?

  31. raqaiw says: Jan 9, 2012 2:24 PM

    Wait, what?! Steelersownyou said they were all invincible! Maybe this is all just an elaborate setup for them creating their own league like stairwaytoseven said…

  32. iambadkid says: Jan 9, 2012 2:24 PM

    woe is me woe is me

  33. thankheavenfornumberseven says: Jan 9, 2012 2:25 PM

    Keisel reminds me of a young Santa Claus.

  34. Stiller43 says: Jan 9, 2012 2:26 PM

    Showed their age? Moreso showed inexperience overall, and inexperience playing a guy like tebow.

    This defense was no 1 in total yards, passing yards, points allowed, and first downs allowed. Top 10 in rush d top.

    Tebow played a helluva game. I dont think it was age, i think it was his playing style they werent used to til the 2nd half whenthey only gave up 3 points…

    Of course the injuries dont help.

  35. raven410 says: Jan 9, 2012 2:26 PM

    Wow that sucks! Keisel may lose a ball.

  36. weepingjebus says: Jan 9, 2012 2:26 PM

    Look on the bright side, Steelers. There’s always the quiet pride that comes from good sportsmansh- oh, right.

  37. holeinone09 says: Jan 9, 2012 2:27 PM

    Unfortunate that so many Steeler starters were injured/hobbled/out for the playoff game. Would have loved to have seen how the team would perform if all the starters were able to play together. But that’s the breaks.

    I think a number of Steeler players have played their last game for the team due to age. My list would include on defense: Smith, Hampton, Keisel, Farrior. On offense, its Ward, Starks and Batch.

    For Steeler fans, great entertaining year of football with a not so great ending. Can’t complain considering a number of teams have never even played a Super Bowl. As a fan for almost 50 years, I have have more than my fair share of great football from the Steelers, and a lot more is coming!

    GO STEELERS!!

  38. tebowpraystobrady says: Jan 9, 2012 2:27 PM

    At least these guys didn’t have to wear bright yellow knee braces to remind everyone they are hurt!

  39. johnnycamparm says: Jan 9, 2012 2:31 PM

    When NFL Films replays this game over and over throughout the next 50 years, they need to give it a name. You have “The Catch”, “The Drive” and “The Quarter”. They need to call this game “The Rapture”

  40. bubba9er says: Jan 9, 2012 2:32 PM

    Young Santa. That beard is awewome.

  41. raylewisandhisteeth says: Jan 9, 2012 2:32 PM

    I now understand why there was no pressure on Tebow after the 1st quarter. Half their D was gone…

  42. test2402 says: Jan 9, 2012 2:36 PM

    Tim Tebow isn’t injured.

  43. burntorangehorn says: Jan 9, 2012 2:43 PM

    mecheng04 says:Jan 9, 2012 2:18 PM

    After the way Harrison went after Eric Decker’s knee last night, all I can say is “Karma’s a …..”
    ====================================
    It happened to the wrong guys. I don’t wish injury on just about anyone, but if I were to wish it on someone, it’d be James Harrison. People can say what they want about Finnegan, Suh, etc., but if we’re talking dirty players, Harrison is a mudhole.

  44. carnboys says: Jan 9, 2012 2:44 PM

    STEELERS SUCK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  45. jdandcoke says: Jan 9, 2012 2:46 PM

    i think we’re seeing the beginning of the end of this current steelers team. too many older guys and too many injuries.

    and not to compare ben and eli, because i think ben is a great qb…..but how much you want to bet that eli’s career winds up being about 4-5 years longer than ben’s? ben gets whacked around way too much and he’s not a youngster anymore. they’ll be looking for their next franchise QB in another two years.

  46. footballfan15 says: Jan 9, 2012 2:46 PM

    Well…I think the defense will be fine next year, but I would like to see a couple of DL and another DB drafted to get some more depth…

  47. test2402 says: Jan 9, 2012 2:47 PM

    Tim Tebow destroyed these guys.

  48. johntonioholmes says: Jan 9, 2012 2:49 PM

    They showed their age? I think they showed what happens when you lose 7 starters.

    Hats off to the Broncos, but it really shouldn’t have been a contest–Denver should have hung 45 on a defense missing 5 starters.

  49. pooflingingmonkey says: Jan 9, 2012 2:50 PM

    Brett Keisel’s beard is a fine, fine beard.

    Regards,

    The Smith Brothers
    Smith Brothers Cough Drops, Inc.

  50. vegaskid21 says: Jan 9, 2012 2:52 PM

    Looking at that growth on his head makes my face itch.

  51. bingobrown12 says: Jan 9, 2012 2:54 PM

    Serious question,How do fans handle tickets,flights
    and other reservations when teams are knocked out
    of the playoffs?

  52. golonger says: Jan 9, 2012 2:55 PM

    ….and anyone wonders why they lost this game? Steelers at full strength would have destroyed the Broncos……

  53. ynot1381 says: Jan 9, 2012 2:55 PM

    I didn’t know Alan Moore played for the Steelers.

  54. tobiasjodter says: Jan 9, 2012 2:59 PM

    caseyanthonymunoz says: Jan 9, 2012 2:11 PM

    Karma.

    —————–

    Did you say Karma? Wow, what a brilliant concept. Never heard that one before. You must be a genius. Karma. Really.

    Oh, wait… what kind of Karma does it take go 12-4 and make the playoffs? I guess he must be doing something right…

  55. tothefellowshipofthemiserable says: Jan 9, 2012 3:02 PM

    When the Steelers have a wide reciever, practice squad and scrap heap players for db’s (Patriots ) ,then tell me about injuries. Nobody wants to hear excuses at this time of year . It is what it is !

  56. bunkmcnulty says: Jan 9, 2012 3:03 PM

    holeinone09 says:
    Jan 9, 2012 2:27 PM
    Unfortunate that so many Steeler starters were injured/hobbled/out for the playoff game. Would have loved to have seen how the team would perform if all the starters were able to play together. But that’s the breaks.

    I think a number of Steeler players have played their last game for the team due to age. My list would include on defense: Smith, Hampton, Keisel, Farrior. On offense, its Ward, Starks and Batch.

    For Steeler fans, great entertaining year of football with a not so great ending. Can’t complain considering a number of teams have never even played a Super Bowl. As a fan for almost 50 years, I have have more than my fair share of great football from the Steelers, and a lot more is coming!
    _________________

    Isn’t that passive aggressive? Blaming the loss on injuries, but then saying “that’s the breaks.” It was. Please don’t use excuses. Everyone has injuries this time of year. I don’t see HOU making excuses with as many injuries as they’ve had. Many would argue CIN was the tougher out this past weekend compared to DEN and the Texans still won.

    And for the record, only 4 teams have never been to a SB (CLE, DET, JAX, HOU). I guess that’s “a number of teams” but it’s only 4 out of 32.

  57. bobhk says: Jan 9, 2012 3:04 PM

    bobhk says:
    Jan 9, 2012 2:36 PM
    raqaiw says:
    Jan 9, 2012 2:24 PM
    Wait, what?! Steelersownyou said they were all invincible! Maybe this is all just an elaborate setup for them creating their own league like stairwaytoseven said…
    ——————-
    Don’t worry. That loser won’t show up to take the heat. Full of brash talk earlier. Now full of sh1t.

    Probably a bandwagoner.

  58. ravenator says: Jan 9, 2012 3:11 PM

    So much for ravens vs steelers rd 3. Pittsburgh couldnt hold up their end of the bargain. Pathetic.

  59. 1historian says: Jan 9, 2012 3:12 PM

    If there weren’t such a thing as ‘Steeler pride’ last night’s game wouldn’t have been close. They only kept it as close as they did because they are the Pittsburgh mother-f…ing Steelers and they have 6 SB trophies – more than ANYONE – to show for it.

    BTW – I am a Patriots’ fan and Tiny Tim’s season ends Saturday.

  60. skel420 says: Jan 9, 2012 3:16 PM

    An agressive D (like the Steelers) fights for every yard. That style will keep the yardage totals low while giving up some big plays.

    The bend but don’t break D (like the Pats/Packers) will allow opponents to complete short passes before being tackled. This inflates the yardage totals, but should, in theory, give up less big plays.

    The Steelers could have used a little more bend but don’t break last night.

  61. mistersmith22 says: Jan 9, 2012 3:32 PM

    pleasantsurpriselefty says:
    Jan 9, 2012 2:11 PM
    funny how one loss can take a team from the consensus AFC favorite to go to the SB to old and creaky.

    ————–

    The Steelers were the CONSENSUS pick for AFC Champ? Are you severely misinformed or a deluded Steelers fan?

    They weren’t even a consensus pick to win yesterday — let alone to get past BAL or NE.

    And it wasn’t just the loss that showed them to be “old and creaky,” it was the injuries and weak secondary play that comes with being old and creaky that has us calling them old and creaky! Warren Sapp called it in Week One — too old to get it done.

  62. clamnewton says: Jan 9, 2012 3:32 PM

    bobhk says:
    Jan 9, 2012 2:36 PM
    raqaiw says:
    Jan 9, 2012 2:24 PM
    Wait, what?! Steelersownyou said they were all invincible! Maybe this is all just an elaborate setup for them creating their own league like stairwaytoseven said…
    ——————-
    Don’t worry. That loser won’t show up to take the heat. Full of brash talk earlier. Now full of sh1t.

    Yeah. He’s been pretty quiet the last couple days. If I remember correctly, he was even calling out his own fans who were concerned about this game.

    Kudos to the Steelers’ fans who still jumped on and make legit posts. It sucks to lose, but you haven’t exactly been Super Bowl deprived the last few years. My team is 8-24 the past two years, so I can’t feel too bad for ya….

  63. cowhawkfan says: Jan 9, 2012 3:35 PM

    Tired of hearing about the Steeler injuries. Thankfully, MOST Steeler fans are not using that as an excuse. Don’t forget the Bronco’s had several starters out as well, including a key OL and safety, and lost their best WR early 2nd quarter.

  64. cowhawkfan says: Jan 9, 2012 3:36 PM

    Oh, and don’t forget Denver’s best defensive player was playing one handed!

  65. holeinone09 says: Jan 9, 2012 3:48 PM

    bunkmcnulty, why so serious? You confuse “excuses” with “facts”. I don’t.

    No sour grapes or complaining, so don’t put words in anyone’s mouth.

  66. heyzeus143 says: Jan 9, 2012 3:52 PM

    karma does not mean what comes around goes around or you get what you deserve, look it up folks, this loss may actually turn out to be a good thing for the steelers – a new better O line for Ben – watch out! some new young blood on D – I have a real good feeling about next year and yes we do get to see Timmah again in his house of holy, here we come here we go and hell is coming with us

  67. cfletcher33 says: Jan 9, 2012 3:54 PM

    True Ike had a horrible game, however not so much the scheme but the lack of adjustments really hurt the Steelers. I simply do not understand why you dont drop into your basic zone blitz scheme and make Tebow drop a ball between a LB and a Corner. I don’t care if you Deion Sanders if you one on one enough with not safet help…hell I can complete at least one pass …just throw it up…This one really hurt….never the less we will again draft well, continue to develope our young players, pick up one key low cost free agent, contend for the AFC North and make another run at the Title..Can’t wait to mini camps start.

    Go Steelers,

  68. rushmatic says: Jan 9, 2012 3:55 PM

    caseyanthonymunoz says:

    But what about Ben?! He was limping soooo hard for the camera. He must have been in unbelievable pain. What a warrior. See ya next year. Karma.

    __________________

    Thought the same thing — what an actor! His agent must have told him that he’s a “warrior” if they win and it’s not his fault if they lose — he’s hurt, after all.

  69. skinsrock says: Jan 9, 2012 4:07 PM

    As the Redskins proved this offseason… You can find lots of talent in rounds 2-5…. You just need to move around, collect picks & add an infusion of talent to the Steelers…. Thing is… They still have Ben, Wallace, Brown, Sanders, Mendenhall, Redman, & I think a decent OL… So, they should be able to reload pretty quickly if they understand this is necessary.

  70. pitt9292 says: Jan 9, 2012 4:34 PM

    Let all the Steeler haters glow now because your own teams suck. Harrison’s hit on Decker is just what the NFL is looking for. That was a great hit, just ask Roger Goodell. Had he gone hi you woulda been crying instead he goes low and your still crying. What a bunch of Whimps on here.

  71. savagenation2011 says: Jan 9, 2012 5:11 PM

    I wouldn’t be insulted losing to Tebow. He’s beaten just about every team he’s come up against since he put on pads at 6 years old.

  72. wyobroncoboy says: Jan 9, 2012 5:29 PM

    “When NFL Films replays this game over and over throughout the next 50 years, they need to give it a name. You have “The Catch”, “The Drive” and “The Quarter”. They need to call this game “The Rapture””

    Or in Keisels case…..”The Rupture”

  73. Derty Ernie says: Jan 9, 2012 5:29 PM

    The Steelers need to regroup obviously and they face the fact,like the Vikes, you only get so many draft picks so re-building is a multi year deal.
    Thus, the Steelers may be out of it for a few years reloading. It happens.

  74. bjtmeyer says: Jan 9, 2012 5:30 PM

    That is one sweet beard Keisel.

  75. jpietrefesa says: Jan 9, 2012 5:31 PM

    I love how everyone says that the defense showed their age, they got outplayed

  76. Deb says: Jan 9, 2012 6:27 PM

    We have four linebackers. Two–Harrison and Farrior–are in their mid-30s. But Woodley is 26 and Timmons is 25. Polamalu is 30 and Mundy is 26. Ike Taylor is 31 and Gay is 27. Hampton and Keisel are 34 and 33, but they went down almost at kickoff and were replaced by young players. We lost because we didn’t game-plan for that passing attack and didn’t adjust when it landed in our laps. Age had nothing to do with it.

    As for Hampton and Keisel’s injuries … we knew before they went down that we’d be making adjustments on the d-line for 2012. Max has done well this year, but our o-line needs a lot of work. Whether that will finally happen is anyone’s guess.

  77. mitchitized says: Jan 10, 2012 6:54 AM

    There are two major facts that forced LeBeau to take the approach he did last weekend: We only had THREE DEFENSIVE LINEMAN, meaning that there were no substitutes; and we were at a high altitude, meaning more substitutions were needed to keep the line fresh.

    This is not an excuse by the way, just explaining why the defensive strategy “doesn’t make any sense” or that “LeBeau failed to adjust” and all that hoo-hah. Read that first paragraph again, and pretend you are LeBeau – I seriously doubt you would have come up with a better plan, especially while the game is on.

    They had to commit to either defending the run or defending the pass, and they made the choice that any other half-competent football person would have made.

    Congrats to Tebow and the Denver offense for turning their game completely upside down, especially in the playoffs. Well done.

  78. dougltc says: Jan 10, 2012 3:28 PM

    “The Steelers defense showed its age on Saturday night. It’s worth wondering how much different that defense will look in 2012.”

    Why haven’t we heard anything about the Steeler’s Saturday night exploits here in the Denver area? You’d think they’d have a curfew on game nights…

    What happened? Did they end up in a club where all the women that are 1/2 of their age wore them out on the dance floor?

  79. ampatsisahypocrite says: Jan 10, 2012 4:18 PM

    Love all these clueless Patriots fans claiming they’re so “not worried” about the Steelers had they won. And this is based on… the fact that the Steelers smacked around the Patriots earlier this year?

    You can bet Belichick was smiling after this one. Because he’s not as clueless as your average Patriots fan.

  80. ballsohardu says: Jan 10, 2012 5:33 PM

    Steelers will look worse next year

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!