The Pittsburgh Steelers aren’t about to tip their hand in regards to their plans for quarterback Ben Roethlisberger this Sunday when the Steelers invade M&T Bank Stadium in Week 9 of NFL action. However, while Pittsburgh does the “will he” or “won’t he” dance, the Baltimore Ravens and John Harbaugh aren’t buying it.
In other words, they think he is playing.
"We'll prepare as if he's going to play," coach John Harbaugh told Jamison Hensley of ESPN. "We'll operate under that assumption."
"The offense doesn't change that much if Landry Jones is in there," Harbaugh said. "Obviously, they're different players. Ben is Ben. We respect him tremendously."
However, Harbaugh wasn’t the only member of the organization to chime in on whether they believe Roethlisberger will be in the lineup at kickoff. Leave it to Terrell Suggs for a quality sound byte.
Terrell Suggs:“We all know who's playin...Tell Ben he's not foolin anybody. I've seen this movie too many times before.We know we'll see #7”— Chris Adamski (@C_AdamskiTrib) November 2, 2016
Suggs: "(Roethlisberger) is gonna yo-yo, 'Oh, I just did individual (drills at practice) today... but we all know who's playing."— Chris Adamski (@C_AdamskiTrib) November 2, 2016
The Ravens seem convinced Roethlisberger will be in the lineup, and the fact he was a limited participant in practice Wednesday points to how, barring a setback, he very well could be under center when the bullets start flying.
Although Harbaugh and company are preparing for Big Ben, him suggesting the offense doesn’t change with Landry Jones at quarterback is far from the truth. Jones certainly knows the system, but doesn’t have the same capabilities as Roethlisberger in a lot of ways. His accuracy, deep ball and mobility certainly are the glaring differences between the two signal callers.
Either way, the Steelers will continue to monitor Roethlisberger’s knee, to ensure swelling doesn’t occur, to keep him on the path back to the playing field. Don’t be shocked if Roethlisberger is listed as questionable and a game-time decision this Sunday.