Steelers pass-rusher T.J. Watt placed in concussion protocol

PITTSBURGH -- Steelers pass-rusher T.J. Watt is in the concussion protocol.

Watt reported the symptoms Friday morning following the Steelers' 21-18 loss to the Patriots and was subsequently placed in the protocol, per Steelers team spokesperson Burt Lauten. To return to play, Watt must be cleared by an independent neurologist. Pittsburgh's next game is Saturday at the Indianapolis Colts.

Watt was injured on the first play of the Thursday night game when running back Ezekiel Elliott's knee hit Watt in the face at the end of a run.

Watt came off the field for several snaps, but returned to the field later in the first quarter with a tinted visor. He finished the game playing 90% of defensive snaps.

The Steelers' other starting pass-rusher, Alex Highsmith, is also dealing with an injury. He exited the loss to the Patriots in the second quarter with a neck injury.