Pittsburgh Steelers receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster will reportedly miss the rest of the 2021 season after he undergoes surgery to repair his shoulder injury, per Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.
Ian Rapoport @RapSheet
Clarification: <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Steelers?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Steelers</a> WR JuJu Smith-Schuster is having surgery, source said, but the surgery has not happened yet. It will, but it hasn’t yet. The decision to have surgery came last night. His status remains the same, as he is expected to miss the season. <a href="https://t.co/H3vwleS6fF">https://t.co/H3vwleS6fF</a>
Smith-Schuster suffered the injury in Sunday's game against the Denver Broncos, coming out in the second quarter before he caught a single pass. Adam Schefter of ESPN is reporting Smith-Schuster has a dislocated shoulder and will miss "about four months."
Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette initially reported the injury could cause Smith-Schuster to land injured reserve. It will now end his season after only five games.
He'll finish the year with 15 catches for 129 yards and no touchdowns.
It's an unlucky break for Smith-Schuster, who signed a one-year deal to return to Pittsburgh in the offseason.
The 24-year-old said he had offers from the Kansas City Chiefs and Baltimore Ravens in free agency, while Schefter reported the Philadelphia Eagles offered him a multiyear deal with more money.
The Steelers selected Smith-Schuster with a second-round pick in 2017. He had 58 catches for 917 yards and seven touchdowns as a rookie.
Smith-Schuster followed up his promising debut campaign with 111 catches for 1,426 yards and seven scores in 2018 on the way to his lone Pro Bowl selection. He hasn't been as productive over the past few seasons, tallying only 154 receptions for 1,512 yards and 12 touchdowns in 33 games between 2019 and 2021.
Pittsburgh fortunately has quality depth at the position with Diontae Johnson and Chase Claypool likely to get the majority of targets going forward. Claypool set a career high with 130 receiving yards in the Week 5 win over the Broncos.
James Washington could also see extra snaps in the wake of Smith-Schuster's injury.