5 bold predictions for the Steelers in Week 13 vs Washington

Running back Matt Jones #31 of the Washington Redskins (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Running back Matt Jones #31 of the Washington Redskins (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) /
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Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Alex Highsmith (56) Mandatory credit: Caitlyn Epes-Pittsburgh Steelers/handout photo-USA TODAY Sports /

Highsmith plays like he is on fire

This week is a critical one for Alex Highsmith, as an unfortunate Bud Dupree injury has opened the door for him to start the rest of the season. Given that he has seemingly been penciled in as the future starting OLB next year, this will be big in determining how much the Steelers need to address this position next year. I think this game starts Highsmith’s path to stardom.

To be frank, this will be one of the best chances he has to rack up some pressures. Washington’s line isn’t very good, and the team will likely shift a lot of attention over to T.J. Watt. This should give Highsmith plenty of one-on-one opportunities, and I think he makes the most of it. He ends the day with a pair of sacks and a forced fumble.

For the fan that has been attentive, this shouldn’t be overly surprising. While he has only played in a limited amount of snaps, Highsmith has looked like a natural edge defender. While he still needs some seasoning and could arguably be a little stronger, this next stretch of games will be crucial for his development. I think he has a great first start this week, and he helps make the loss of Dupree more bearable.