Steelers’ James Conner exited Monday night’s game vs. Giants with an ankle injury

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Maria Taylor of ESPN reported during the second half that James Connor sustained a left leg injury in the first half of the Monday night game against the Giants. Conner was ruled as a suspect for the Steelers’ starting back, coming back into the game.

Connor caught nine passes for six yards and two passes for eight yards before leaving the game. In Conner’s absence, the Steelers bowed out, leaving second-year running back Benny Snell, who eclipsed the 100-yard rushing barrier through the fourth quarter. The 2019 fourth-round snail out of Kentucky overtook Jaylen Samuels as Pittsburgh’s No. 2 running back on the depth chart after training camp.

A 2018 pro bowler, Conner – who is set to become a free agent for the next offseason – has been hampered by injuries since joining the Steelers in 2017. After missing the final three matches of his cheating season, Conner missed three games in 2018 and six games last season due to injury. Conner proved to be a good player when he was healthy, rushing for 1,581 yards and 16 touchdowns of 363 carries for 4.4 yards per carry. He has also improved greatly as a blocker and a receiver after initially struggling during his rookie season.

Despite Conner’s absence, the Steelers appear to be on their way to a Week 1 win, as Pittsburgh took a 25-10 lead with just five minutes remaining.