The procedure, which was performed on both sides of his legs, is more commonly known as sports-hernia surgery, and has an estimated recovery time of two months. Ayers spent most of the 2016 season on the practice squad, seeing action in just two games and logging two receptions on six targets for 53 yards and a touchdown. He'll look to compete for a spot on the 53-man roster next season.
Ayers (coach's decision) is inactive for Sunday's AFC championship game against the Patriots, TribLive.com reports.
Ayers played in the Steelers' previous two playoff games, and he isn't known to be nursing an injury, so his deactivation Sunday is somewhat surprising. However, he's buried on the depth chart and wouldn't have been worth fantasy consideration anyway.
Playing in just his second NFL game, Ayers led the team with 12 targets, and finished the season with six catches for 53 yards and the one score. His role should be greatly reduced next week against Miami with the return of Antonio Brown, who sat out this meaningless contest.
Playing in his first NFL game, the rookie receiver grabbed his first career catch, although his biggest contribution came when he drew a critical 35-yard pass interference call against rookie cornerback Tavon Young that set-up a Le'Veon Bell fourth-quarter touchdown run.