Steelers CB Steve Nelson will not play vs. Chargers; Artie Burns will start
Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Steve Nelson has been ruled out of Sunday’s game at the Los Angeles Chargers, meaning former first-round pick Artie Burns will return to the Steelers’ first-team defense.
Nelson suffered a groin injury during last week’s loss to the Baltimore Ravens and was a limited participant in practice all week. Burns on Friday confirmed he’d gotten most of the first-team reps in Nelson’s stead, and he was going to start the game at Los Angeles.
#Steelers CB Steven Nelson is not making the trip to Los Angeles and has been downgraded to OUT for Sunday night’s game vs. the Chargers.
— Burt Lauten (@SteelersPRBurt) October 12, 2019
Nelson initially was listed as questionable on the injury report Friday, but he was downgraded Saturday morning.
Nelson played all but one of the Steelers’ defensive snaps this season, according to footballoutsiders.com. Signed to a three-year, $25.5 million contract in March, he’s helped to stabilize the Steelers secondary. Pro Football Focus rates Nelson as the sixth-best cornerback in the NFL.
35 Passes Defensed
8 Tackles for Loss
Steven Nelson is bringing some 💦splash💦 with him to Pittsburgh. pic.twitter.com/TcIVOwiQk3
— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) March 14, 2019
Burns became a starter early during his rookie 2016 season but lost that gig to Coty Sensabaugh during a Week 6 game last season. He started the Week 15 game against New England but quickly was benched. He has played only two defensive snaps this season.
The other outside starter, Joe Haden, is joined by Burns, slot corner Mike Hilton, utility man Cameron Sutton and rookie Justin Layne as healthy cornerbacks for the Steelers.
Chris Adamski is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Chris by email at [email protected] or via Twitter .