All the latest signs are pointing toward Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger returning from post-concussion symptoms and playing in Sunday’s game against the Raiders.
Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said Tuesday Roethlisberger has not experienced additional discomfort as a result of the concussion since Friday. He said all indications are Roethlisberger will take part in full practice when the team returns on Wednesday.
“We’re not anticipating him having headaches this week,” Tomlin said. “But if he does, of course, we’ll act quickly.”
Tomlin ruled Roethlisberger out on Saturday after consulting with medical experts, who recommended Roethlisberger not play, forcing untested second-year backup Dennis Dixon into the starting role against the Ravens. Roethlisberger passed neurological tests early last week and had taken part in practices on Wednesday and Thursday, but began experiencing the headaches after working out on both days. When the issues did not subside, according to Tomlin, the final decision was made.
“I think the entire week Ben was prepared to and expecting to play,” Tomlin said. “He realized he was experiencing some discomfort, he realized that was a part of the process. He had been through that before. But based on [the doctor's] suggestion, we did what we felt was appropriate. Whether he agreed with it or not was really irrelevant at that point. We had a game to play.”
Tomlin didn’t rule out the possibility the team could look at other quarterbacks this week depending on Roethlisberger’s status.
“As I sit here today, I’m comfortable with the three men that we have,” said Tomlin. “But that may change as soon as Wednesday, we’ll see.”
Tomlin added that injured backup Charlie Batch, who is sidelined with a broken left wrist, is on schedule and could return in a couple of weeks. The team’s only other active QB is Tyler Palko, who served as Dixon’s backup after signing with the Steelers last week.