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mesaSteeler
12-16-2011, 06:40 AM
Tomlin in bind over Big Ben's ankle injury
Friday, December 16, 2011
By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Mike Tomlin has another one of those decisions that fall only in the lap of a head coach -- whether to play quarterback Ben Roethlisberger Monday night in San Francisco.

Roethlisberger said he will do everything he can to play and, indeed, his left ankle temporarily was put in a cast Thursday. The cast was then removed, and it will be used as a mold for a New Jersey company to make a plastic brace.

He would wear the brace in practice and, the Steelers hope, in the game against the 49ers.

Tomlin's decision is threefold: a. Will Roethlisberger be able to perform well enough to help his team? b. Can he move on his feet well enough to protect himself by warding off a potential killer hit? c. Does he risk making the injury worse by playing?

"I don't know if it's my decision," Roethlisberger said. "I'm going to do everything I can to be out there. It's probably more on them. So, if I'm not out there, it's probably because they didn't feel comfortable with me being out there, protecting myself or whatever it is.

"They know better than I do. I can just tell them whether I think I can go or not, and I think I can go all the time. I'm going to do everything I can to be out there for this team."

Offensive coordinator Bruce Arians said Charlie Batch will start if Roethlisberger does not. He would like to see Roethlisberger practice by Saturday if he is going to play but said Tomlin could wait until early Monday to decide if he plays.

"We'd like to see that, but there's still 48 hours where that thing can just keep getting better and better and we'll just wait and see," Arians said.

Roethlisberger's ankle was injured with six minutes left in the second quarter Dec. 8 against Cleveland. He returned to play in the second half but was limited in what he could do, one reason the Steelers ran Rashard Mendenhall four times without success after getting a first down at the Browns 2.

He said it feels worse today than it did in that second half, and it causes him more problems than when his right foot was broken and he continued to play last season wearing a shoe with a metal plate in it. His left foot also was sprained Oct. 2 in Houston and he wore a shoe with a metal plate for a few games after that.

"Putting pressure on it hurts," Roethlisberger said of his latest injury. "With this, I can't get on my toes which is kind of important to running and throwing. I can't twist with it. Those kinds of things are the most painful.

"With that [broken foot], I could tape it up and not move it, I could function with it. This is a little tougher to deal with. I think, if I had the same injury in my right one, it would be worse because that's the one you stop on and stuff like that. But, in terms of throwing and planting and rotating on that one, yes it's difficult."

Roethlisberger is not expected to practice again today.

"The lack of mobility with a high ankle sprain is a little more than what he's had to deal with in the past," Arians said. "We have to be careful with it. He'll let us know."
Hoke pays visit

Chris Hoke had surgery on his neck Wednesday and spent some time Thursday visiting the Steelers locker room.

Of course, he can not play, but Casey Hampton wants him next to him at their remaining games.

Hoke watches a ton of video on opponents. Hampton admits to watching very little.

"I don't really watch film," Hampton said. "I'm not a big film guy. Hey, man, you just got to whup the guy in front of you; doesn't matter what else you do, know what I mean?"

As for Hoke watching all that video, Hampton said, "That's how Hokey's wired. That's his thing to get himself going. Hokey's like a coach on the field. He's got to come to the game, he's got to, or I'll be lost."
Other injury updates

Still not practicing, besides Roethlisberger, were safety Troy Polamalu, center Maurkice Pouncey, wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders and linebacker Chris Carter. Offensive tackle Marcus Gilbert also did not practice because he was ill, but he should be fine.

Arians confirmed that if Pouncey cannot play, Trai Essex would start at left guard for Doug Legursky, who would move to center.
No ruling on Harrison

Still no ruling from the NFL on linebacker James Harrison's appeal of his one-game suspension. A spokesman said the ruling would come this week.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11350/1197215-66-0.stm#ixzz1ghGma4Z0

steelax04
12-16-2011, 09:15 AM
Disappointed in Hampton's comments about film... It's not just about the guy in front of you. Guess he doesn't remember all the chop blocks and other schemes teams (particularly the Ravens) have thrown at him.

LayingTheWoodley56
12-16-2011, 09:35 AM
Big Snack's comment doesn't look good at first, but as long as this isn't a recent thing - if he's been doing this is whole career - you can't fault the guy. He's been a Pro Bowler virtually his entire career.

LayingTheWoodley56
12-16-2011, 09:37 AM
I think it's cool to hear him talking about Hoke, saying he needs him on the field and he's like a coach. Chris has been an excellent backup for this team for a long time; I mean, when you keep a BACKUP NOSE TACKLE around for as long as we have kept him, it really says something about the guy. God Speed, Chris, we're going to miss you around these parts.

truesteelerfan
12-16-2011, 10:29 AM
As far as Ben goes- I hate to say it because it doesn't help Tomlin's decision (not that he asked me yet of course)...but if Ben is available to play Monday against the 49ers- I'd do what we can to get him in there. Then let him rest against Cleveland and St. Louis (we should be able to win those games with Charlie)...So that gives him 2-3 weeks based on our seed to rest it up. This is our hardest game remaining on the schedule.

NoFieldFive
12-16-2011, 10:56 AM
if the Raven's lose Sunday then play Ben. If the Raven's win then winning or losing the 49er's game won't matter much so sit Ben then

California-Steel
12-16-2011, 11:16 AM
Casey Hampton quote below about not watching film and why he needs Hoke. You lazy arse.
Hokey's like a coach on the field. He's got to come to the game, he's got to, or I'll be lost."
WTF!!! Then study some film and don't be lost. Do you know how much better you could be if you studied some film. You would not get chop blocked by the man not in front of you if you saw it on film. OMFG!!! Keep your mouth shut then. :banging:

Curtain_of_Steel
12-16-2011, 11:24 AM
Tomlin should start to heed his own advice and just shut up and stop talking. Because the foot continues to be inserted dee down his throat.

1 day its Ben must practice if he is going to play, than the next day Ben doesn't have to practice, than its we will see.
1 day Harrison should be suspended it was an illegal hit, and so on and so on.

SHUT UP already.

Ben puts the team first on the field, so if he thinks he can go, than its on him to say yea or nay. 50% of Ben is better than 100% of Batch. Plus I rather have Dixon anyway at least he can run. Where as Batch is way past his playing days, he is just a cheap place holder for the #2 qb spot with Leftwich out.

Curtain_of_Steel
12-16-2011, 11:26 AM
As far as Hampton goes? Who cares, was he not an all pro in the past? Yes, everyone has their own style, it has worked for him. With the play of Hood, Heyward and McClendon, his days are numbered anyway due to youth.

But I'm not going to criticize his style of play, he has been good if not great thru the years.

tanda10506
12-16-2011, 01:58 PM
I've seen on a few threads that "if the ravens lose play Ben and if they win then sit him". I would agree if the ratbirds didn't still have to play the Bengals next week. The Bengals play the rats well and it's in Cincinatti. I would say the Bengals have a better chance at beating them then the Chargers.

As for anybody wanting Dixon to start, don't you remember the first two games last year? His top receiver was the ground, every pass he threw to the outside was in the dirt and everything he threw in the middle was sub par at best. He can't hit the broad side of a barn. It's frustrating how Batch just stands there, he's immobile, but at least he can throw. Either way I say we don't win this game without Ben. Last year when we won with Batch/Dixon the defense was playing lights out, turning the ball over, and even scoring. This year the defense is still great, much better than most, but I don't know if they can win the game by themselves.

GMU Steeler
12-16-2011, 02:54 PM
I've seen on a few threads that "if the ravens lose play Ben and if they win then sit him". I would agree if the ratbirds didn't still have to play the Bengals next week. The Bengals play the rats well and it's in Cincinatti. I would say the Bengals have a better chance at beating them then the Chargers.

As for anybody wanting Dixon to start, don't you remember the first two games last year? His top receiver was the ground, every pass he threw to the outside was in the dirt and everything he threw in the middle was sub par at best. He can't hit the broad side of a barn. It's frustrating how Batch just stands there, he's immobile, but at least he can throw. Either way I say we don't win this game without Ben. Last year when we won with Batch/Dixon the defense was playing lights out, turning the ball over, and even scoring. This year the defense is still great, much better than most, but I don't know if they can win the game by themselves.

I believe the Ravens play the Bengals in two weeks not next week since they still need to play the Browns again which we do too obviously. Anyhow, it's a tough decision. Hopefully Ben is 100%.

tanda10506
12-16-2011, 03:49 PM
Correct, it's the last game of the season for them. I don't think the Browns stand a chance, but with 2 games left even more reason to play Ben if he can go, regardless of the rats performance sunday.

NoFieldFive
12-16-2011, 03:58 PM
if Batch starts they can not run, run, third and long and the 49'ers tee off on Batch and the O line. They must mix it up and not be predictable with Batch in there.

if the standard is the standard as Tomlin says then they pretend Batch is Ben and don't change anything due to Batch being in there.

Curtain_of_Steel
12-16-2011, 04:08 PM
I think when Tomlin said the word "standard" twice he was just studdering, lol. You cant plug and play Batch for Ben and expect Ben in a Batch Jersey. If he thinks that, than coaches need to be drug tested too.

You can get that with bringing in Woodley and taking out Harrison to a point as you have 1 of the key LB's there. But come on, Ben is the standard, Batch, well is Batch. The only way you mention Batch in the same statment with Ben, is....Batch is Bens backup and only because Byron is hurt.

tanda10506
12-16-2011, 04:10 PM
if Batch starts they can not run, run, third and long and the 49'ers tee off on Batch and the O line. They must mix it up and not be predictable with Batch in there.

if the standard is the standard as Tomlin says then they pretend Batch is Ben and don't change anything due to Batch being in there.

I agree with the theory but Batch just doesn't have the capabilities to air it out like Ben jas been. I agree we can't run, run, 3rd and long, we need to pass shorter and a good yards per carry average is key. Hopefully Ben plays, if he doesn't ( I really think he will) then the best thing we can hope for is a great game from Arians!:chuckle: