Steelers have short-term focus without Roethlisberger

Posted Sept. 17, 2010 @ 2:17 p.m.
Posted By Mike Wilkening

In explaining to Pittsburgh reporters why QB Dennis Dixon would be starting against Tennessee in Week Two, head coach Mike Tomlin said, tellingly, “It starts that we won,” referring to the overtime victory over Atlanta in the opener. The Steelers’ four-game stretch without QB Ben Roethlisberger to begin the regular season requires a “one foot in front of the other mentality,” Tomlin said this week, which is why, he said, he declined to say whether Roethlisberger would be guaranteed his starting job when he returned in an interview with Sirius NFL Radio earlier in September. Dixon’s improvement throughout the opener, as well as his potential to continue improving, factored in the decision to keep him in the lineup another week, Tomlin said. Of note was Dixon’s success throwing in the second half vs. Atlanta, when he completed 8-of-10 passes for 145 yards. With QB Byron Leftwich (knee) returning to practice this week, the Steelers soon could have another option at the position as they try to get through the first quarter of the season without Roethlisberger, their best offensive player.