Cleveland Browns linebacker Anthony Walker Jr. will require season-ending surgery to repair a torn quad tendon, multiple media outlets reported Friday.
ESPN reported the recovery time for such an injury is between five and seven months.
Walker underwent an MRI on Friday, one day after sustaining the injury with 10:34 remaining in the third quarter of Cleveland's 29-17 victory over the visiting Pittsburgh Steelers.
Walker took a blow to the face from Steelers tackle Chukwuma Okorafor during a passing play and fell awkwardly to the turf. Okorafor then dove on the back of Walker while guard James Daniels inadvertently stepped on Walker's legs.
Walker was loaded onto a cart with an air cast applied to his left leg.
"He is a huge, huge, huge part of our football team, what he brings to us on the field and off the field," Browns coach Kevin Stefanski said Friday.
Jacob Phillips is expected to be elevated into the starting lineup in place of Walker.
One of the team captains, Walker has recorded 13 tackles -- including four for losses -- and two pass deflections in three games this season.
Walker, 27, has totaled 469 tackles, 4.5 sacks, three interceptions and one forced fumble in 73 career games (63 starts) with the Indianapolis Colts and Browns.
--Field Level Media