The Pittsburgh Steelers getting set to kick off their 2023 season against the San Francisco 49ers. Kyle Shanahan and the Niners were one of the teams in the NFC last year, and it showed. They finished with the league's top-ranked scoring defense while finishing 6th in offensive points per game.
Because of their innovative head coach and the talent around their roster, the 49ers have gone to the NFC Championship Game two years in a row, but have fallen just short of another Super Bowl appearance. Now Mike Tomlin and the Steelers get a difficult task and one that will require all hands on deck to get the job done.
Fortunately, the Steelers are one of the healthiest teams in the league following an intense summer of training camp and preseason action. Pittsburgh sadly lost rookie CB Cory Trice Jr. to injured reserve but escaped the summer without any other major injuries.
Heading into Week 1, Pittsburgh had just two players on their official injury report dating back to Wednesday. We know that -- of the players on the 53-man roster -- 45 can be active on gameday (plus a third quarterback who doesn't count toward the 45 with the new rule in place this year). So who will be suiting up for the Pittsburgh Steelers this week and which players will be inactive against the 49ers?
Steelers inactives vs 49ers Week 1:
- No. 2 QB Mason Rudolph (3rd QB)
- No. 25 CB Desmond King
- No. 60 OT Dylan Cook
- No. 89 WR Gunner Olszewski
- No. 94 DT Armon Watts
Interestingly, new CB addition Desmond King is inactive this week, the team confirmed on Steelers.com. The Steelers are likely erring on the side of caution and giving the newest roster addition one more week before activating him. Larry Ogunjobi, who was limited in practice all week, is expected to suit up and play today against the 49ers.
The 49ers began the week with 11 players on the Week 1 injury report. However, by Friday, all but two players were able to log a full practice. Former All-Pro tight end, George Kittle, was listed as questionable on Friday as he is dealing with a groin issue.
Meanwhile, the Niners' number one cornerback, Charvarius Ward didn't show up on the initial injury report but popped up on Thursday with a heel injury which caused him to miss practice. He participated in limited fashion on Friday and was listed as questionable for today's game. Both Kittle and Ward avoided the inactive list today and are expected to play.
This is going to be a pivotal Week 1 game for the Pittsburgh Steelers. With their starters seeing ample action during the preseason, having a clean bill of health, and playing at home, let's hope the Steelers can take care of business in Week 1 against the San Francisco 49ers.