Hopes Suddenly Drain: Will Ben Roethlisberger Be Ready?

Charlie CoxCorrespondent IDecember 28, 2008

Sunday at Heinz Field against the Cleveland Browns, Pittsburgh Steeler quarterback Ben Roethlisberger took his last fall of the regular season, knocking him out for the game.

Roethlisberger, just two minutes from halftime and a seat on the bench, dropped back and extended the play like normal Ben, and was hit by Willie McGinest.

Roethlisberger hit his tailbone first, then snapped his head back on the ground.

Being in Houston, I was listening to Tunch, Hillgrove, and Wolfey on Fox Sports 970. The 15 minutes seemed like forever not being able to see the hit on Ben or what the happenings were on the field.

After going to watch the second half of the game at a local bar, I found out Ben was diagnosed with a concussion.

My worries lifted, but I still can't stop thinking of the playoff picture.

Coincidentally, last season the Steelers were plagued by a last game injury when the Steelers played the Rams. Willie Parker broke his fibula, leaving the game to backup Najeh Davenport, who ran for over 100 the game. That proved to be the last good game for Davenport, as he was held to under 40 yards against the Jaguars in the playoffs.

This year, with Roethlisberger injured, I can't help seeing deja vu. A concussion, however, is easier to heal than a broken leg, but a looming black cloud of doom appears to hang over Pittsburgh.

Mike Tomlin has become a scapegoat for the injury because he didn't rest Ben, but the only thing responsible is the unit that has plagued the Steelers the whole season: the offensive line. Granted Ben held onto the ball, but McGinest came unblocked.

Roethlisberger has two weeks to recover and plan for either the Baltimore Ravens or the Miami Dolphins.

If worse comes to worst, Byron Leftwich should be perfectly capable to handle the Ravens or Dolphins with the help of the Steeler defense that has helped Big Ben throughout the season.

Godspeed to the Pittsburgh Godsend.