As Steelers linebacker T.J. Watt continues to recover from a pectoral injury suffered in Week One, his return will be delayed by an injury that he suffered in the preseason.
According to ESPN.com, Watt recently had arthroscopic knee surgery.
The procedure traces to a low hit Watt absorbed from Lions tight end T.J. Watt in the preseason finale. Watt brushed off the injury at the time, explaining that he could have kept playing in the game during which it occurred.
It’s unclear whether Watt aggravated the knee injury during his absence related to the partially torn pec.
The surgery reportedly will delay Watt’s return by at least a week or two. He may not be back until after the team’s Week Nine bye.
The hit prompted Watt to wonder what he could do, if anything, to avoid similar blocks in the future. Within the tackle box, offensive players are allowed to administer a block below the waist. Teammate Cam Heyward has asked for more protection for defensive players in those situations.
The knee surgery means that the Steelers could be without Watt for the full extent of an upcoming stretch of challenging contests against the Bills, Buccaneers, Dolphins, and Eagles.
The Steelers are 0-7 when Watt doesn’t play. They are 14-point underdogs at Buffalo on Sunday. If they can’t win without him, they’ll be 1-7 at the bye.