After a tough and controversial 23-22 victory at Miami on Sunday, the Steelers suffered a potentially greater loss.
Aaron Smith, the Steelers’ best defensive lineman and arguably the NFL’s top 3-4 defensive end over the past decade, left the game early in the second half with what is believed to be a torn triceps. The injury will likely end his season, per the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
This will mark the third time in the last four years that the now-34-year-old Smith suffered a career-ending injury during the season. In the other two seasons (2007, 2009), the normally tough Pittsburgh defense was nowhere near as formidable without Smith and essentially collapsed down the stretch of both seasons.
The Jets visit Pittsburgh Dec. 19.