Who Will Be the Starting QB for the Steelers?

Pedro GonzalezContributor IMay 17, 2010

MIAMI - JANUARY 03:  Quarterbacks Ben Roethlisberger #7, Charlie Batch #16 and Dennis Dixon #2 of the Pittsburgh Steelers talk on the sidelines while taking on the Miami Dolphins at Land Shark Stadium on January 3, 2010 in Miami, Florida. The Steelers defeated the Dolphins 30-24.  (Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)
Doug Benc/Getty Images

If I had asked that same question five months ago, the answer would be easy.

But thanks to some legal problems, Steelers superstar Ben Roethlisberger was suspended for the first six games, without pay, of the regular season.

Now the Pittsburgh Steelers coaching staff have to make a decision they thought they wouldn't need to make for many years to come.


Who will be the starting QB in 2010?

A) Charlie Batch

B) Dennis Dixon

C) Byron Leftwich

Let's compare each player:


Charlie Batch

He is a proven veteran and a great backup, but when he was a starter with Detroit, he couldn't do much for the team.

At age 35, he probably wont do anything special. This might not be a problem if the young running back corps can be explosive.

Nevertheless, looking at the worst case scenario,if Jonathan Dwyer, Rashard Mendenhall, and Mewelde Moore can't get more than 3.0 yards average per carry, their in big problems.

With Batch just able to get a few completions and the defense not able to save them, were looking at a 1-5 or 2-4 record in those first six games. Obviously, with that record they would put Big Ben as the No. 1 guy right away.


Dennis Dixon

Dixon is young, athletic, and has a great upside; still, questions remain if he can compete at a high level.

Drafted in the fifth round after suffering an ACL injury that damaged his draft stock, Dixon was selected as a project and probably Big Ben's future backup.

In 2009, after injuries to both Roethlisberger and Batch, he was named the starter in Week 12. He didn't play "good," but he didn't play "awful" either, making 12 completions out of 26 attempts, scoring a touchdown, and throwing an interception.

The only thing bad hat happened to him was that the interception was in OT and it gave the Baltimore Ravens a chance to kick the would-be winning field goal. So while he can only get better at this young age, the question is how well can he play in the clutch ?

If he can't respond to the high pressure games, we're looking at a 2-4 or 3-3 record.


Byron Leftwich

The favorite by many, including NFL expert Adam Schefter.

He could probably be labeled as a "bust", thanks to his tenure with the Jaguars, Falcons, and the Buccaneers.

Yet with the Steelers he played pretty well, he still has some gas in the tank and can make a play when asked to.

The problem is that if pressure gets to him, he will cost a lot to the Steelers.

Leading me to believe they could end up 1-6 or 4-2.

In my opinion I would choose Dennis Dixon, but you tell me who would choose and why?