The Steelers have activated Minkah Fitzpatrick, per a club announcement. After a short stint on the COVID-19 list, the star defensive back will be eligible to play against the Bengals on Sunday.
Fitzpatrick tested positive on Nov. 15, forcing him to the reserve list, per the league’s protocols. The Steelers clearly missed him last week against the Chargers, allowing 41 points in a losing effort. They were also without edge rusher T.J. Watt and cornerback Joe Haden, but both players are trending towards returning as well. Watt, who suffered hip and knee injuries against the Lions, returned to practice on Wednesday. Haden, meanwhile, is expected to practice tomorrow.
Through nine games, Fitzpatrick has 64 tackles, one pass defensed, one tackle for a loss, and one forced fumble. Besides linebacker Joe Schobert, he has more total stops than anyone on the Steelers.
Fitzpatrick has been a cornerstone of the Steelers’ D ever since the mid-2019 trade that brought him to Pittsburgh. The Steelers sent first-, fifth-, and sixth-round picks to Miami in the trade, but they’d do it again in a heartbeat. In 2020, the 25-year-old tacked on yet another First-Team All-Pro nod with four interceptions, 79 total stops, and eleven passes defensed on the year. He also took one of those interceptions back for a pick-six, giving him four defensive TDs for his career.