No decision: Rest Ben Roethlisberger


Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger has "a shot" to play against the Cleveland Browns on Sunday, coach Mike Tomlin told reporters.

It's a good sign for the Steelers that Roethlisberger would be available if they needed him, but there really is no decision when it comes to the quarterback and his high ankle sprain. The Steelers need to sit Roethlisberger for the regular-season finale.

There is a chance that Sunday's game might be a critical one for the Steelers. If Pittsburgh wins and Baltimore loses, the Steelers would win the AFC North and clinch a first-round bye in the playoffs.

But that's an "if." The Steelers, who have already locked up a playoff berth, can guarantee Roethlisberger a bye this week by resting him.

Sitting Roethlisberger isn't waving the white flag and conceding the division to Baltimore. The Steelers beat the Rams and the NFL's 32nd-ranked run defense by handing the ball off to Rashard Mendenhall. They could use the same game plan against the Browns and the league's 30th-ranked run defense.

Plus, backup quarterback Charlie Batch was extremely effective in his game-manager role.

"I thought he did some really good things," Tomlin said of Batch. "[But] his performance has no bearing on how we go about making the decisions that are right for us this week. A lot of the decisions center around Roethlisberger's health."

The best decision that would improve Roethlisberger's health heading into the postseason is to rest him.