Pittsburgh Steelers: A Season Riddled With Injuries

TJ JenkinsAnalyst INovember 24, 2009

As if losing one of the best 3-4 defensive ends in the NFL wasn't enough, the Pittsburgh Steelers have lost All Pro Safety Troy Polamalu for at least a month. But we all knew that.

The newest Steelers injuries are to both starting quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and his backup, Charlie Batch.

Roethlisberger was drilled and knocked out of Sunday's game against the Kansas City Chiefs during overtime. In other words, at pretty much the worst possible time for one of the sure fire 'Kings Of Clutch' to go down. The Steelers would go on to lose the game 27-24 after a long Matt Cassel pass set up the game winning field goal.

But losing Roethlisberger wasn't enough, oh not even close. Second string quarterback Batch went down as well, breaking his wrist.

Well, let's take a look at the Steelers 53 man roster, scroll to the 'QB' slot and see what we've got.

Ben Roethlisberger - Injured, concussion.

Charlie Batch - Injured, broken wrist.

Dennis Dixon - Healthy, pre-season experience.

In other words, the Steelers front office is on the phone with multiple quarterbacks. Including former Baltimore Raven Cleo Lemon. But also former Tampa Bay quarterback Jeff Garcia.

Just the fact that the team is even contacting quarterbacks leads me to believe that Ben Roethlisberger is hurt. And hurt bad.

Not to say the man isn't tough enough to take a shot to the head and come back, after all he nearly died following a serious motorcycle accident prior to the 2006 season.

But when it comes to concussions, one has to draw a fine line, especially with all of these reports floating around with troubles for past NFL players due to concussions.

Jeff Garcia wouldn't be a bad choice, in fact he should very well still be on the Philadelphia Eagles' roster had they not decided to try to ride the Michael Vick Train to the playoffs.

In 2007 and 2008, he threw 25 touchdowns and only 10 interceptions. He's definitely not going to lose the game for your team, and will more than likely win a few due to his experience and intelligence.

He's not the mobile passer that we once saw, but that doesn't take away from his mechanics.

He'll be working out for the team today (Tuesday, November 24th)

Let's review.

The Pittsburgh Steelers sans Polamalu, Smith and Roethlisberger are not a playoff, much less a championship caliber team.

Prior to the season if you'd of asked me to name three indispensable players on the team, those are the three names you would have heard come out of my mouth.

We desperately need Roethlisberger to play against the Ravens, he's an absolute bird hunter. The black and purple can't stop him when he's outside of the pocket, take a look at last year's AFC Championship Game for proof of that fact.

I do however, refuse to risk his career and his future health for my own selfish whims of beating the Ravens and attempting to make the playoffs. Some things are more important than football; Ben Roethlisberger's health is one of those.

The man's a competitor, a warrior. He'll want to play. But if there's ANY doubt that he won't be the same Big Ben, then I don't think Head Coach Mike Tomlin has a choice but to sit him on Sunday Night.

I'll leave you with one question...Aaron Smith, Troy Polamalu, Charlie Batch and Ben Roethlisberger are all hurt...who's next?

As always, TJ Jenkins' work can be found at both the Pittsburgh Pigskin Blog and at Sports Jabber .


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