Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger Rib Injury Uncertainty Behind Benching In Raiders Loss

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PITTSBURGH (93.7 The Fan) - Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger said he's “still pretty sore” with a rib injury, but is feeling better every day and plans to play on Sunday against the New England Patriots.

On the #1 Cochran Ben Roethlisberger Show Tuesday, Roethlisberger addressed why he didn’t get right back into the game after returning to the field against the Oakland Raiders on Sunday.

Roethlisberger missed four drives in the second half as a 14-10 halftime lead became a 17-14 deficit. Roethlisberger returned to lead a go-ahead drive in the fourth quarter, but the Raiders scored again to send the Steelers to a 24-21 defeat, their third in a row.

Roethlisberger said Tuesday it felt like he had the wind knocked out of him after a sack late in the first half. The feeling didn’t go away. But adrenaline kicked in and he was able to finish the half.

Roethlisberger said the X-ray machine at Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum that was used to check his ribs at halftime was really old, and team doctors couldn’t see anything conclusive. 

“By the time we got back to our locker room, the team was already on the field -- that’s how long it took to get an X-ray,” Roethlisberger said. He said backup quarterback Josh Dobbs had already completed a series before Roethlisberger even got his shoulder pads back on.

Team physician Dr. James Bradley told Roethlisberger it could be “one of three or four things.” With the injury being unknown, the Steelers were afraid to put Roethlisberger back in.

“The team, and when I say the team it's (General Manager Kevin) Colbert, it’s everybody, was kind of like, ‘Let’s let this things play out’ because I think it was still the unknown of the injury. I think what they were probably worried about was making it worse because we didn’t know what the injury was,” said Roethlisberger. “You want to play unless you think you’re going to hurt your team."

Roethlisberger says he returned to the field for an emergency situation and/or to give Dobbs advice if he wanted. According to Roethlisberger, it was a wait-and-see situation because they didn’t know how bad the injury was.

After throwing a couple of footballs, Roethlisberger said he talked to coach Mike Tomlin. “He asked how I was doing and I said, ‘I’m alright, I’ll give you everything I’ve got.' He said, ‘Let’s wait and see how this thing plays out.’Aand I think that was the decision the team had made. I don’t remember the exact specific play, but coach and I were having communications. I was just trying to stay loose and threw a couple times and I told him, ‘I’ll go if you need me to.’”