Steelers: The Ben Roethlisberger timeline


Ben Roethlisberger will begin practice Wednesday after his knee injury during the Rams game week 3. This is the point where the coaching staff can use this injury to their advantage.

If I am the coach of the Steelers and I have just seen the third string quarterback come out and finish off a team that is 4-1, has a top ten offense and a top ten defense, I can wait on bringing back my franchise quarterback. More than that, he can be brought back in at a time not expected.

In practice this week all three could be sharing reps and this would be an opportunity for the team. Todd Haley and company should game plan with the quarterback they want to start, as each guy has specific playbook knowledge, while giving each of the other two the physical preparation required to play Sunday.

Tomlin has already endorsed Landry Jones as the potential starter but he would be wise to back pedal a bit, by not specifying a starter between Jones and Michael Vick you force the opponent to work off of one half of Jones’ tape vs. over two games of Vick’s. You then proceed to say it will be a game time decision while already having your game plan set.

The Kansas City Chiefs have concerns as they are 1-5 and have the 20th ranked offense. Jamaal Charles is out for the year and go-to receiver Jeremy Maclin could miss the game. The upstart Pittsburgh defense can keep the game in control and dictate the decision.

If the Steelers score enough on offense with their quarterback of choice they can ride out a victory and delay Ben’s return another week, likely catering to his recovery. If he is ready and needed then he comes in, just as Jones did last week.

Back-up quarterbacks come into games and win all the time, Jones last week and Hasselbeck the week before for the Colts. Even if you want to play one guy the whole game, it is not necessary to share that with the public or the opponent.

The team has three quarterbacks that have won games this year. This is where a little bit of deception can keep your adversary on their heels while keeping Big Ben off his. If the team is 5-2 on November 1st why help the Bengals prepare.

Next: AFC North Power Rankings

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