Steelers’ Watt ruled out; Turner tossed vs. Vegas

  • Previously covered the Kansas City Chiefs for the Kansas City Star and Oklahoma University for the Oklahoman.

PITTSBURGH — The Steelers defense took a significant hit in the second quarter when star pass-rusher T.J. Watt exited with a groin injury. He was ruled out after halftime.

In addition, Steelers wide receiver Diontae Johnson suffered an apparent leg injury on the final play of the game, an 11-yard reception from Ben Roethlisberger. The Raiders prevailed 26-17 to improve to 2-0 and drop the Steelers to 1-1.

Before Watt’s injury, which appeared to occur early in the Las Vegas Raiders’ final drive of the first half, the pass-rusher had a strip sack of quarterback Derek Carr along with four tackles. Watt recorded his first strip sack against Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills a week ago.

In the fourth quarter, right guard Trai Turner was ejected for unsportsmanlike conduct after he appeared to spit toward a Raiders player. Turner appeared to be angry about something that occurred during a play where Najee Harris and Roethlisberger hooked up for a 25-yard catch-and-run touchdown.

Raiders defensive tackle Solomon Thomas was also flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct, but was not ejected. With Turner out, B.J. Finney took over at right guard.

Prior to the season opener, Watt signed a four-year, $112 million extension that made him the highest-paid defender in the NFL. He didn’t practice in the team periods for all of training camp and joined them for the first time four days before the Bills game.

Watt, 26, was the Steelers’ fourth defensive starter sidelined by injury Sunday. Cornerback Joe Haden and linebacker Devin Bush were both inactive after suffering groin injuries that appeared on the injury report for the first time Friday.

Then in the first quarter, nose tackle Tyson Alualu went down with an ankle injury. He barely put any weight on his right ankle as he was helped off the field by Chase Claypool and Isaiah Buggs and, after an evaluation in the injury tent, was carted back to the locker room.

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