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Heyward Active vs. Ravens
Sunday, Nov. 6
The Steelers did not list Heyward among their inactive players against Baltimore in Week 9, per Bob Labriola of the team's official website.
Latest on Heyward's Practice Status
Friday, Nov. 4
The Steelers announced Heyward was a full participant in Friday's practice session.
Steelers Need Heyward Healthy for Playoff Push
The 27-year-old lineman has come into his own since assuming a starting role in 2013, and he has been a key performer for the Pittsburgh defense again so far this season, including 16 combined tackles and three sacks entering Week 5. He had one total tackle against the Jets before exiting because of the injury.
During the 2014 and 2015 campaigns, the former Ohio State standout averaged over 53 tackles and seven sacks per season.
Perhaps the most valuable aspect of Heyward's game, though, is his ability to play through pain and avoid injuries of significance.
Entering 2016, Heyward had never missed an NFL regular-season contest in five years as a pro since the Steelers selected him with the No. 31 overall pick in the 2011 NFL draft.
Injury concerns started to surface during the preseason, however, when Heyward was forced to exit a game early because of a high ankle sprain.
While high ankle sprains are tricky injuries that can linger for a lengthy period of time, Heyward managed to work his way back into the lineup.
Pittsburgh boasts a talented defense, including a front seven that excels at pressuring the quarterback, but it doesn't have another lineman with Heyward's pass-rushing chops on the roster.
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