Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Chase Claypool will “miss some time” due to his toe injury.
According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, the Steelers receiver did not suffer a season-ending injury against the Chicago Bears in Week 9. However, the toe injury will lead to Claypool being evaluated on a “week-to-week” basis.
“Some relatively good news for #Steelers WR Chase Claypool: His toe injury is not considered season-ending,” says Rapoport. “There was some fear of that originally, but he’s now considered week-to-week, source said. May miss some time, but will be back.”
The severity of Claypool’s injury wasn’t learned until following the game on Monday when head coach Mike Tomlin indicated the receiver was being evaluated for a toe injury.
On Tuesday, Tomlin revealed Claypool would undergo an MRI to reveal just how serious his toe injury is.
For the season, Claypool has 29 receptions for 433 yards and one touchdown. With the 23-year-old receiver likely out of the mix for this Sunday’s game against the Detroit Lions, the Steelers will lean on James Washington and Ray-Ray McCloud to start opposite of Diontae Johnson.
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Freiermuth Emerging as Steelers’ Top Tight End
Steelers tight end Eric Ebron may be returning to the lineup after a two-week absence, but Pat Freiermuth has stepped up — and doesn’t appear to be going anywhere.
The rookie second-round draft pick has caught three touchdown passes over the past two weeks and currently ranks second among all tight ends with four TD catches on the season.
“He’s doing what we’ve all seen him do throughout the process, and that’s catch the football,” Mike Tomlin said of Freiermuth on Tuesday, November 10. “He makes combat catches. He makes the tough catch seem somewhat routine. His hand-eye (coordination) and his body control are exceptional for a bigger-bodied guy, a tight end-type guy. He’s still growing and learning in a lot of ways both on and off the field week in and week out. But he’s got an awesome base and a skill set to build upon.”
Freiermuth led the team in targets (6), receptions (5) and touchdown catches (2) in Monday’s 29-27 victory over the Bears.
While Ebron certainly brings a blocking element to the offense, Freiermuth’s emergence as a receiving option may lead to more snaps for the rookie tight end.
“Ebron had a good week last week,” Tomlin said regarding his injury. “We anticipate him working this week, possibly as early as (Wednesday). We’ll let the quality of that work be our guide in terms of potential inclusion into this plan (this week).”
Ebron has just seven receptions for 47 yards this season. However, Claypool’s recent injury may keep the veteran tight end in the lineup — for the time being.
Big Ben on Steelers Win: ‘Few Leads Are Safe’
The Steelers were able to defeat the Bears in large part due to the late-game heroics of Ben Roethlisberger. The 18th-year quarterback led a game-winning drive — the 50th of his career — as the Steelers kicked the game-winning field goal with 26 seconds remaining.
“If you’ve done this long enough, you know very few leads are safe,” Roethlisberger said following the game. “Games are never over, no matter how well you’re playing or how bad you’re playing. Tonight was one of those nights that hopefully we all can appreciate and know we have to play 60 minutes — and sometimes more. You can’t let up.”