Sportress of Blogitude

Ben Roethlisberger listed as questionable, reportedly unlikely to play

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Ben Roethlisberger has been listed as questionable in the Pittsburgh Steelers’ final injury report ahead of Sunday’s game against the Kansas City Chiefs, but sources indicate at this point that the quarterback is unlikely to suit up.

Roethlisberger, out since suffering an MCL sprain and bone bruise in a Week 3 win over the St. Louis Rams, increased his activities in practice this week — including testing out several different knee braces — with the hopes he could give it a go this weekend. But reports indicate that Landry Jones — who was impressive in relief of an injured Michael Vick while leading the Steelers to a 24-20 victory over the San Diego Chargers last Sunday — took all the first-team reps during Friday’s practice session.

Vick, meanwhile has been ruled out with a hamstring injury, meaning practice squad quarterback Tyler Murphy may be elevated to backup status.

Roethlisberger indicated earlier this week that his pain threshold wouldn’t be a prevailing issue in determining whether or not he plays Sunday. But he also indicated the ultimate determination would be left to head coach Mike Tomlin, who indicated earlier this week that he was “assuming” Jones would start since he was “healthy.” This likely means Roethlisberger didn’t show enough to Tomlin during practice to prove he was ready to play. But as La Canfora indicated in his tweet, Big Ben could still convince Tomlin to let him suit up as late as Saturday.

The Chiefs are a 1-5 team that saw Jamaal Charles, its best player, lost for the season with an ACL injury, suggesting that it may be the wisest and safest course of action to rest Roethlisberger. This would allow him another week of rehab and practice, particularly beneficial given the Steelers have a critical divisional showdown with the undefeated Cincinnati Bengals — on its bye — looming a week from Sunday.