Adam Schefter is delivering a piece of good news for the Denver Broncos, who are still reeling from their home loss to the Kansas City Chiefs today even though they still made the playoffs (thanks to a loss by the Oakland Raiders to the San Diego Chargers). Schefter is reporting that Rashard Mendenhall is likely not going to be able to play next week when the 12-4 Pittsburgh Steelers travel to Mile High to play the 8-8 Broncos in the first round of the AFC Playoffs.
Mendenhall is key for the Steelers running game — a staple of Pittsburgh’s winning ways for the last few decades. The Steelers will still bring a playoff caliber defense and the experience that Super Bowl runs will bring, but Ben Roethlisberger is going to have a harder time from keeping the Broncos secondary on their heels given that he’s also dealt with injuries that should keep him from running as well.
Expect the Steelers to hope the passing game is enough to get it done against the Denver defense, and the good news there is that the Broncos secondary has been beat up in recent weeks. Given the Broncos’ performance today, however, the Steelers likely have nothing to worry about.