The Steelers stayed alive in the crowded AFC playoff race by beating the Bengals on Saturday. Now, they've added help for the middle of their banged-up defense, signing former Pro Bowl linebacker Jaylon Smith, the veteran's agent announced Tuesday.

Smith, 28, who's best known for a six-year run with the Cowboys, is expected to begin on Pittsburgh's practice squad, according to CBS Sports HQ Senior NFL Insider Josina Anderson. He'll be eligible for game-day promotions in each of the Steelers' final two regular season games -- Week 17 at the Seahawks, and Week 18 at the Ravens -- as well as any potential postseason games.

The Steelers have been in the market for LB help for weeks, with veteran starters Kwon Alexander and Cole Holcomb both on injured reserve. Starter Elandon Roberts is also battling an injury of his own, with journeyman Blake Martinez subsequently pressed into the lineup. And that's not accounting for injuries at other levels of the defense, including to star safety Minkah Fitzpatrick.

A second-round pick of the Cowboys in 2016, Smith briefly starred as a key member of Dallas' defense, eclipsing 120 tackles in three straight seasons from 2018-2020, a span in which he also logged a combined eight sacks and 17 tackles for loss. Injuries shortened his 2021 campaign, however, and he's since bounced between four teams as a reserve.