Charlie Batch will start this Sunday against the Cleveland Browns, replacing Byron Leftwich who suffered a rib fracture against the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday night.
In addition receiver Jerricho Cotchery will miss the game with what Coach Mike Tomlin said are “multiple rib fractures,” suffered late in the Ravens game.
The team brought in four players for workouts on Tuesday, looking to add depth with the injuries, including quarterbacks Mike Kafka, who played for the Philadelphia Eagles and Brian Hoyer, who was with the New England Patriots, and former Steelers receiver Plaxico Burress and Derrick Williams, who was with the team in training camp.
“We’re looking at these guys with the potential to sign at least one at each position,” said Tomlin. “We have a myriad of things going on in terms of the health of our own men. The men that we acquire will fortify our depth in terms of us preparing to win this football game.”
Ziggy Hood is considered questionable with a lumbar spine sprain and will be limited early in the week, but could see work as the week progresses. Isaac Redman suffered a concussion against the Ravens, but has done well in the tests and could play on Sunday.
Antonio Brown worked out on Tuesday and will be limited in practice early this week, but is questionable, as are Marcus Gilbert and Troy Polamalu, who is expected to run on Wednesday. Ben Roethlisberger is considered doubtful with an SC shoulder sprain.
“He had an additional test done today and all things are very positive in terms of where he is,” said Tomlin. “We are encouraged about his status.”
For Batch having the week to prepare and know he is going to play definitely will make things easier.
“Having a week to prepare is a lot different versus coming in during a game,” said Batch. “As you go through a week to prepare you have the chance to talk about what you like, what you don’t like in the game plan and let it unfold during the course of the week.”
Batch said that even though he has been in the NFL for 15 years, he still gets excited by the opportunity to start.
“You do because they are rare,” said Batch. “The longer you are in this game as a backup you don’t know when it’s going to happen. You count your blessings and continue to move forward.”