The fact an outside linebacker posted a multiple-sack game in the regular season finale and ended up leading the team in sacks with a double-digit total would surprise no one who has been following the Steelers for the past several years. Which outside linebacker did that in 2022, though, might be something of a surprise.
Alex Highsmith finished the 28-14 victory over the Browns on Sunday at Acrisure Stadium with 8 tackles, 2.5 sacks, and three hits on the quarterback, and that allowed the third-year pro to end the 2022 season with 14.5 sacks all the while playing on the same team with reigning Defensive Player of the Year T.J. Watt. Highsmith is the Steelers Digest Player of the Week.
Also considered were Cam Heyward, who finished with 8 tackles, 2 sacks and was robbed of a third on a bogus roughing the passer penalty, and tipped a pass at the line of scrimmage; Najee Harris, who rushed for 84 yards on 23 carries and scored a 1-yard touchdown; Minkah Fitzpatrick, who finished with a team-leading 10 tackles; George Pickens, who caught 3 passes for 72 yards, including a 31-yard touchdown, and also drew a pass interference penalty in the end zone to set up another touchdown; and Damontae Kazee, who had 2 tackles, including 1 for loss, and an interception.