A miserable loss in Miami might be the least of the problems facing the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger limped through the locker room after the 30-15 setback with his left knee aching following an awkward step in the second quarter.
Though he returned to finish 19 of 34 for 189 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions, Roethlisberger planned to undergo an MRI.
“I don’t know how it happened,” Roethlisberger said. “I just felt something funny in my knee. Yeah, that’s about it.”
Roethlisberger was scrambling to his right to escape pressure in the second quarter when he stepped out of a potential sack. He wound up throwing an interception on the play and left briefly in favor of backup Landry Jones.
“Hopefully we’ll pray it’s just not too serious,” Roethlisberger said.
Roethlisberger missed four starts last season for various injuries, including a sprained left knee. Jones went 1-1 while filling in for Roethlisberger, though the Steelers face a significant test next weekend when Tom Brady and the New England Patriots visit Heinz Field.
Baltimore’s injury-riddled and beleaguered secondary was dealt another blow when veteran Jimmy Smith left Sunday’s game against the New York Giants with a concussion.
With Smith off the field in the second half, New York wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. went off against Baltimore’s Shareece Wright, Will Davis and Tavon Young, scoring two long touchdowns as the Giants held on for a 27-23 win.
The most frightening injury of the day happened in Tennessee. Cleveland defensive back Jordan Poyer went to the hospital with a lacerated kidney following a vicious blindside hit in the second quarter of the Browns’ 28-26 loss to the Titans.
Poyer was hurt chasing down Titans returner Marc Mariani when Antonio Andrews hit him, knocking Poyer to the ground with 6:33 left in the second quarter. Andrews was flagged and penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct on the blindside hit.
The hit left Poyer bent over on the grass for a few minutes before he was able to walk to the Browns sideline. He was evaluated, then put on a cart that took him to the locker room before Poyer was transported to a local hospital. He was evaluated at the hospital for a concussion and an abdomen injury, revealing the damage to his kidney.
Asked about the hit, Browns coach Hue Jackson called it just football and doubted Andrews was doing anything more than just trying to block Poyer.
“Sometimes you aim at a spot and hit some other things,” Jackson said.
The Rams’ defense took another hit in a second straight loss, this time at Detroit. Defensive tackle Michael Brockers aggravated his hip injury and defensive back Lamarcus Joyner left with a forearm injury.