Troy Polamalu to rest for next three games

Defensive end Aaron Smith won't be the only defensive starter the Pittsburgh Steelers will be waiting on to come back in the playoffs. According to this ESPN.com report, the Steelers will rest safety Troy Polamalu for the remainder of the regular season.

Polamalu has been dealing with an Achilles injury for several weeks, and the ailment was getting progressively worse. The final straw was the 45-yard interception return for a touchdown last week against the Cincinnati Bengals. Polamalu finished the game, but he had a noticeable limp.

Pittsburgh struggled last year without its star safety in the lineup. The Steelers went 9-7, including a five-game losing streak that kept them out of the playoffs.

Pittsburgh has a chance to clinch a playoff spot Sunday against the New York Jets.

Backup safety Will Allen or Ryan Mundy will fill in for Polamalu for the remainder of the regular season.