Apparently, Charlie Batch expects to be with the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2013, because he told Tim Benz and Bob McLaughlin of WXNX in Pittsburgh he had little reason to believe he wouldn't.
Nevermind the fact he is no longer under contract. According to Batch:
"My plan is to come back, and I haven't heard anything differently from the organization. And I think when you leave out of there at the end-of-the-year meetings, you know one way or the other. And they didn't tell me that they didn't want me back. So I think that's a good sign."
Batch began the 2012 season as the third-string quarterback behind franchise leader Ben Roethlisberger and experienced backup Byron Leftwich. When both Roethlisberger and Leftwich suffered rib injuries in the middle of the season, Batch stepped in to lead the team to one of it's most embarrassing losses, and one of it's most emotional victories ever.
He will turn 39 years old in 2013, the primary reason why many believed he would retire following the end of the 2012 season. However, Batch doesn't seem to feel like age has anything to do with it. He still feels capable and viable, and believes the team still wants his veteran experience and leadership on the sidelines.
Pittsburgh currently has only two passers under contract: Roethlisberger and recently claimed John Parker Wilson. It is unknown whether the team will invite Leftwich back to camp to compete for one of the two backup spots behind Roethlisberger, or if the team will draft a quarterback for the same purpose. The team kept four quarterbacks heading into the 2012 preseason, with the fourth guy - Jerrod Johnson - becoming a victim of final cuts.
If Batch does receive another contract offer and survive pre-season cuts, he will be participating in his 16th season in the NFL, an astonishing feat for any player regardless of statistical performance or depth chart rankings.