Steelers Notes: Tomlin mum on Roethlisberger's pre-game medication
By Mike Bires firstname.lastname@example.org
| Posted: Tuesday, December 20, 2011 8:58 pm
PITTSBURGH - Coach Mike Tomlin refused to get involved in any controversy surrounding the medication Ben Roethlisberger took before Monday night's game in San Francisco.
During post-game comments after the 20-3 loss, Roethlisberger took offense to ESPN's team of pre-game analysts suggesting he took a pain-killing injection to dull the pain in his sprained left ankle.
However, Tuesday at his weekly press conference, Tomlin said "I don't know the specifics of what kind of medical treatment that he got prior to that game. I'm sorry. I don't have the answer to that."
It's hard to imagine that any NFL coach would not know exactly what medications his star quarterback took before a game. So it all likelihood, Tomlin just didn't want to add fuel to a touchy subject.
Roethlisberger, however, wanted to set the record straight.
"We heard that (ESPN analyst) Steve Young and those guys say that before pre-game, 'Oh, he'll go shoot it up.' No, we don't do that," Roethlisberger said. "They would never put me out there and endanger me or anybody on this team. There was no injection. There was two Tylenols and two Advil."
It is very rare for NFL teams to publicly address the topic of painkilling injections. But Eagles QB Michael Vick reportedly took shots to ease the pain from rib injuries the past two weeks.
And there is at least one well-known incidence of a pain-killing injection that backfired in Steelers' history. Running back Jerome Bettis missed a playoff game against the Ravens on Jan. 20, 2002 when he had a bad reaction to a pain-killing shot in his groin.
The Steelers will make a roster move, possibly as early as today, for depth purposes at running back.
Mewelde Moore, who's considered a third-down back who plays primarily in obvious passing situations, is out indefinitely with a sprained knee ligament. Moore will not play Sunday against the Rams.
At this time, the Steelers only have three running backs on their active roster -- starter Rashard Mendenhall, backup Isaac Redman and Moore. Two weeks ago, Jonathan Dwyer was placed on injured reserve with a foot injury. Coach Mike Tomlin said that Mendenhall could be limited at practice this week due to sore ribs.
There's a good chance that the Steelers will promote rookie running back John Clay from the practice squad to the active roster. It is too early to speculate if Moore will have to go on IR.
Even though linebacker LaMarr Woodley left Monday night's game in the second half, the Steelers aren't saying their sack leader suffered a setback. Woodley had missed four games and a significant part of another due to a hamstring injury. But Tomlin said "We took him out because fatigue set in. But he was fine. There was no setback."
During his noon press conference, Tomlin said that he had yet to see Ben Roethlisberger and therefore didn't have an updated health report on his quarterback's injured ankle. "He felt sore of course (after the game), but no worse for the wear as far as I could tell," Tomlin said. Roethlisberger said he wants and expects to start Saturday against the Rams.
After sitting out the 49ers game as he served a one-game suspension, LB James Harrison was back at team headquarters Tuesday even though his teammates had the day off.
Harrison was suspended after he delivered a helmet-to-helmet hit on Cleveland QB Colt McCoy on Dec. 8. Harrison was suspended and not fined because he's a repeat offender in the NFL's player safety initiative.
Even though he wasn't allowed to accompany the Steelers to San Francisco, Harrison was still in the news Monday night.
After the second power outage at Candlestick Park that delayed the game, Harrison used his Twitter account to say, "If I can't play then nobody can't play ... Lights out!"
And when a fan ran onto the field during the outage, Roethlisberger could be heard saying, "Where is James Harrison when we need him?"
A few years ago in Cleveland, Harrison body-slammed an unruly Browns fans into the turf after he ran onto the field.