Oct 21, 2012; Orchard Park, NY, USA; Tennessee Titans quarterback Matt Hasselbeck (8) takes a snap from center Fernando Velasco (61) during the game against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Titans beat the Bills 35-34. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

Pittsburgh Steelers sign Fernando Velasco, who Bengals already played this year

Sep 11, 2011; Jacksonville, FL, USA; Tennessee Titans center Fernando Velasco (61) looks up during a game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Field. Mandatory Credit: Fernando Medina-USA TODAY Sports


The Pittsburgh Steelers lost Pro Bowl center Maurkice Pouncey and longtime inside linebacker Larry Foote to season-ending injuries during their loss to the Tennessee Titans on Sunday.

Pouncey suffered a torn ACL and MCL in his right knee during the Steelers’ opening possession of the game, and now they’re scrambling to find a suitable replacement for him.

Adam Caplan of TheSidelineView.com reports they are signing former Titans starter Fernando Velasco to a one-year deal.

Velasco started all 16 games for the Titans last year, but lost his job to free agent pickup Rob Turner. He played against the Bengals earlier this preseason when the Titans came to Cincinnati in Week 2.

Pouncey is arguably the top center in the NFL, and going from him to Velasco is a very significant dropoff, and the Bengals need to make every effort to attack the interior of the Pittsburgh offensive line when the two sides faceoff next Monday in a game that will see the loser fall to 0-2 and likely out of the playoff picture.


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