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Old 05-02-2010, 11:03 PM   #1
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Default Tomlin: It is way too early for a QB decision

Tomlin: It is way too early for a QB decision
http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pitt...s_679223.html#
By Scott Brown
PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Monday, May 3, 2010

Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said Sunday he will take his time in sorting out the competition at quarterback.

Byron Leftwich again ran the first-team offense during an abbreviated practice. But after the Steelers concluded mini camp, Tomlin said Dennis Dixon and Charlie Batch will also get work with the starters during the 12 voluntary practices the team will hold May 18 through June 10.

The three are vying to start while Ben Roethlisberger serves a six-game suspension that could be reduced to four games for good behavior.

Tomlin indicated that he won't settle on a starter until some time during training camp, which starts at the end of July.

"Some of the evaluation-oriented things can't take place in shorts," Tomlin said of when he will name the No. 1 quarterback. "So it's on my radar, but not very high on the to-do list at this point. It will be addressed at some point."

Tomlin said one reason Leftwich ran the first-time offense during the five practices the Steelers just held was so he could work with the starters after not being with the team in 2009.

"The other guys will get opportunities," Tomlin said.

When asked if any of the quarterbacks had separated themselves during mini camp, Tomlin said: "What is it, May 2? You guys are killing me."

The competition at quarterback, however, will continue to be scrutinized. Leftwich, Dixon and Batch all have had success in the past while filling in for Roethlisberger.

Leftwich, whom the Steelers re-acquired in a trade with Tampa Bay on April 20, said the competition among the three is friendly.

He echoed Tomlin's sentiments when asked if anything should be read into his working with the first-team offense during mini camp.

"It's too early to say," Leftwich said. "I'm just going to keep working my butt off."

Upcoming schedule

The players will get a couple of weeks off before the Steelers resume offseason practices. Here is the schedule for the 12 practices, which are voluntary:

May 18-20

May 25-27

June 2-4

June 8-10

Scott Brown can be reached at sbrown@tribweb.com or 412-481-5432.
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Old 05-03-2010, 03:57 AM   #2
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Default Re: Tomlin: It is way too early for a QB decision

I can see Leftwich getting the nod here. He has the experience and unless Dixon shows something he will remain the no.2 quarterback.
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Old 05-03-2010, 06:11 AM   #3
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Default Re: Tomlin: It is way too early for a QB decision

Well - the one thing we pretty much know for certain is that Batch won't be the starter come opening day. It will come down to Lefty v. Dixon and hey - may the best man win.
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Old 05-03-2010, 04:44 PM   #4
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Default Re: Tomlin: It is way too early for a QB decision

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Well - the one thing we pretty much know for certain is that Batch won't be the starter come opening day. It will come down to Lefty v. Dixon and hey - may the best man win.
More interesting to me is the question of who gets cut. Someone absolutely has to get cut, no? Only Jon Gruden would go into the season with four QBs on the roster. I have to assume that Batch's injury history will make the decision a bit easier.
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Old 05-03-2010, 05:23 PM   #5
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Default Re: Tomlin: It is way too early for a QB decision

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More interesting to me is the question of who gets cut. Someone absolutely has to get cut, no? Only Jon Gruden would go into the season with four QBs on the roster. I have to assume that Batch's injury history will make the decision a bit easier.
I think Batch will be carried as insurance on the 3rd string until Ben's suspension is over, then he'll be released. A suspended player doesn't count against a team's roster limit for the duration of their suspension, I don't think.

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Old 05-03-2010, 05:41 PM   #6
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Default Re: Tomlin: It is way too early for a QB decision

I hope Dixon wins the job, but feel comfortable with Lefty running the offense as well. Time will tell
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Old 05-04-2010, 12:37 AM   #7
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Default Re: Tomlin: It is way too early for a QB decision

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I dont know how Lefty did in Tampa last year but he did lose to the job to a rookie. That right there tells me Dixon will be the starter come Game 1.
Leftwich fits into our scheme really well and was successful in all of his playtime with us. He even did better than Ben in a replacement scenario because he would release the ball sooner. (I'm not saying he's better than Ben, but the skill set he brought matched up better in that situation)

That being said, I think there is something special about Dixon and think he is right on the cusp of having true starting potential so I won't be surprised if he wins the job in training camp / preseason, although I think Leftwich will be given plenty of chances to make his case.

I don't expect much from Batch, other than to continue serving as a mentor.
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Old 05-04-2010, 12:42 AM   #8
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Default Re: Tomlin: It is way too early for a QB decision

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I dont know how Lefty did in Tampa last year but he did lose to the job to a rookie. That right there tells me Dixon will be the starter come Game 1.
Dixon couldn't beat out a fragile old man for the second spot last year, so what's that tell you?
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Old 05-04-2010, 02:34 AM   #9
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Default Re: Tomlin: It is way too early for a QB decision

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Dixon couldn't beat out a fragile old man for the second spot last year, so what's that tell you?

It Tells me that last year Batch had more experience because of how long he had been with the team and Dixon was still learning and this is a new year.
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Old 05-04-2010, 04:18 AM   #10
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Default Re: Tomlin: It is way too early for a QB decision

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It Tells me that last year Batch had more experience because of how long he had been with the team and Dixon was still learning and this is a new year.
Agreed I don't think Batch will be much of a threat this year.
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