Quarterback Byron Leftwich said he is ready to roll on Sunday night against the Ravens after getting in three solid days of practice this week.
“I feel good,” said Leftwich. “I feel like I got more reps with the guys. I feel as though I am ready to roll. This is our last big day and now it’s time to do what you have to do and get ready to roll Sunday night.”
Leftwich is excited about the opportunity to start for the injured Ben Roethlisberger, and knows that the closer it gets to game time the more amped up he will be.
“The butterflies will come around Sunday, but that is a good thing,” said Leftwich. “I am excited. We all understand the importance of this football game. We are going to do what we have to do and try to get one more point than them.”
The Steelers will be without wide receiver Antonio Brown (ankle), tackle Marcus Gilbert (ankle), safety Troy Polamalu (calf), and Roethlisberger (right shoulder), but there is good news as well.
Running back Rashard Mendenhall, who practiced all week, is listed as probable and is expected to play.
“It’s been feeling good,” said Mendenhall. “I will just continue to grow off of that. We are just taking it a day at a time.”
Mendenhall expects the running backs to share playing time on Sunday night, and said that he doesn’t feel at all limited in what he can do.
“I wouldn’t step out there if that was the case,” said Mendenhall. “I feel good where I am. I want to continue to build on that and see what happens.”
Fellow running back Isaac Redman likes having all three backs, himself, Mendenhall and Jonathan Dwyer healthy, especially for such a key AFC North match-up.
“I think all three of us are going to play and keep it rolling and keep a fresh running back out there all of time,” said Redman. “We are going to try to pound them and keep a fresh running back out there.”
Linebacker Stevenson Sylvester (hamstring) is questionable for the game, while cornerback Curtis Brown (quadriceps), safety Ryan Clark (concussion), defensive end Brett Keisel (shoulder), tackle Max Starks (ankle) and cornerback Ike Taylor (illness) are all probable.