Play Fantasy Use your Fantasy skills to win Cash Prizes. Join or start a league today. Play Now
Blog Entry

Roethlisberger expected to start vs. 49ers

Posted on: December 19, 2011 8:46 am
 
Baltimore's loss to San Diego means Pittsburgh could end up with the No. 1 seed in the AFC. (Getty Images)

By Ryan Wilson

It is, as they say, go time. For the Steelers, that means quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is set to start Monday night versus the 49ers even though he suffered a high-ankle sprain against the Browns 11 days ago. Several teammates suggested as much to CBSSports.com Rapid Reporter Dale Grdnic Saturday, and the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette'd Gerry Dulac tweeted similar news Sunday evening.


There was some speculation leading up to the game that Big Ben might sit this week, get healthy, and prepare for the playoffs. Pittsburgh clinched a spot in the postseason with Tennessee's loss to Indianapolis Sunday, and since the Steelers trailed the Ravens in the division, it appeared that their road back to the Super Bowl would have to come on the road as a wild-card team.

But that all changed Sunday night after the Chargers dismantled the Ravens on national television, and in the process changed the balance of power in the AFC North. As of Monday morning, the Steelers were atop the division, and if they beat the 49ers and win their remaining regular-season games against the Rams and Browns, they would also be the AFC's No. 1 seed. That's how good the top of the conference has been this season; a win or a loss could be the difference between a No. 5 seed and a No. 1 seed (and the difference between a first-round bye and facing the Broncos in a wild-card matchup).


The Pittsburgh Steelers will travel to Candlestick Park to take on the San Francisco 49ers on Monday night. Join James Brown, Dan Marino, Bill Cowher, Shannon Sharpe and Boomer Esiason as they break down this upcoming matchup.

Baltimore has beaten Pittsburgh twice this season but their inexplicable road collapses against lesser opponents have been their demise. The Ravens' four losses have come courtesy of the Titans, Jaguars, Seahawks and Chargers -- teams that are a combined 25-31 (and none have a winning record).

Roethlisberger was injured during the second quarter of the Steelers' Week 14 game against the Browns. At the time, he thought his "leg was broken," and spent most of the next week and a half in a walking boot. But Big Ben is known for his resiliency; his eight-year career has been highlighted by amazing plays unparalleled toughness. From a Haloti Ngata paw to the face to what he managed to do a week and a half ago on one good wheel, Roethlisberger's tolerance for pain exceeds that of a normal human.

So it's not surprising that he'll be on the field against San Francisco. Just how effective he will be, however, could determine if the Ravens' fall from grace is a 24-hour thing or if it means, in the words of linebacker Terrell Suggs, "We still can get our first-round bye and play at home but we need a little help now. We have to go the long way. Yeah, it's a reality check. We got our ass kicked, and now it's back to the drawing board."

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, Like Us on Facebook, subscribe to our NFL newsletter, and while you're at it, add our RSS Feed.
Comments

Since: Jun 16, 2011
Posted on: December 20, 2011 9:21 am
 

Roethlisberger expected to start vs. 49ers

Yea let's start Big Ben lol that really worked out well!



Since: Nov 21, 2011
Posted on: December 20, 2011 8:05 am
 

Roethlisberger expected to start vs. 49ers

Good call Kyle on SF winning but an instant classic?  That game will instantly be thrown in the dog crap pile with the Giants and jets games



Since: Sep 22, 2007
Posted on: December 19, 2011 7:48 pm
 

Roethlisberger expected to start vs. 49ers

lmao



Since: Sep 22, 2007
Posted on: December 19, 2011 7:46 pm
 

Roethlisberger expected to start vs. 49ers

good call bud



Since: Dec 3, 2007
Posted on: December 19, 2011 6:00 pm
 

Roethlisberger expected to start vs. 49ers

BYTE ME:  ... you don't take a chance with your QB, look at the ravens last night, LaDarius webb sat, he could have played, but they didn't want to hurt him more than he already is.

LaDarius Who?  You are comparing LaDarius Who to Ben?  OK.




Since: Mar 24, 2010
Posted on: December 19, 2011 5:34 pm
 

Roethlisberger expected to start vs. 49ers

Even thought I want to see the Steeler's lose you don't take a chance with your QB, look at the ravens last night, LaDarius webb sat, he could have played, but they didn't want to hurt him more than he already is.

Who is LaDarius Webb ? I guess the Ravens would have won with him in the line-up. If you are going to make a comparison, at least make one that makes sense. The Steelers will play Ben if he is ready to go. They won't risk everything just for the fun of it.  Don't be surprised if the Steelers come out firing and try to build up a lead that the D can hold. That way, Ben can take a rest in the second half.



Since: Dec 19, 2011
Posted on: December 19, 2011 5:24 pm
 

Roethlisberger expected to start vs. 49ers

Heres the deal, there is a lot of history between these two teams. Not to mention a ton of rings. Ben is probably the toughest QB playing right now. He knows what it will take to beat the 49'ers. But more importantly the defense knows what it take to win. I say run the ball, and a really good dose of the Steel Curtain and we move on to St. Louis. I pray everyone comes out safe, and I fully expect a very good game.



Since: Aug 24, 2006
Posted on: December 19, 2011 5:23 pm
 

Roethlisberger expected to start vs. 49ers

He'll get recognized when he enters the HOF.  For now, he gets plenty of resepct, leave all teh cameras and love affairs for the tebows and bradys of the game. 



Since: Aug 12, 2008
Posted on: December 19, 2011 5:07 pm
 

Roethlisberger expected to start vs. 49ers

It's good for ratings that Ben Roethlisberger is playing tonight. Both teams are already locked for the playoffs. For some reason, the Steelers are going to chance it and let him play banged up.  

Patrick Willis on the other hand, is the 49ers heart and soul on defense. He's not playing tonight. No chance in him tweaking the hammie even worse. Smart on Harbaugh. The 49ers defense misses the presence in the middle. They have a lot of young talent (Navarro Bowman, Aldon Smith) doing big things in a confident group. Their o-line is showing signs of fatigue. SF is having serious issues scoring points in the red zone. They kick field goals all night and they'll get whooped by the Steelers.  

Both teams are pretty even. The 49ers score more pts/game and give up less pts/game, but not by much on both categories. SF has lost two out their last three, but I don't believe they have played their best football yet.

I expect a game of smash-mouth football. SF will bring a gang-load of Frank Gore and Kendal Hunter. To the contrary, I expect Mendenhall to give the 49ers' rush-d everything he can.

Regardless, you really can't ask for a better MNF matchup this late into the season. Both teams are fighting for seeding. SF can only go as low as #4, the Steelers could fall to #5. Both teams need their players healthy and could use the 1st round bye. 

Expecting a gem - an Instant Classic...

49ers 19 - Steelers 17






 



Since: Nov 18, 2006
Posted on: December 19, 2011 5:00 pm
 

Roethlisberger expected to start vs. 49ers

I'm not a fan of either team. Don't really have a favorite NFL team. But, what I do know, he is called Big Ben for a reason. He comes up BIG in the crunch time games. He has proven it time and time again.

I don't follow him personally, but he seems like a regular Joe. I could be wrong and let me know if I am. He doesn't need the spotlight shinning on him 24/7. It seems to me he just goes about his job, does what he needs to do, then moves on. It's like you can't "hate" him. I used quotes on purpose. To me he's just your normal Joe, but playing a professional sport.

Again, it's just my taken on Ben.


The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com