Mike Tomlin mum on Saturday's starter
LATROBE, Pa. -- The Pittsburgh Steelers are keeping their starting quarterback a secret. Again.
Ben Roethlisberger will play in Saturday night's exhibition against the New York Giants -- his first game action since drawing a six-game suspension -- but coach Mike Tomlin wouldn't say Thursday if he will start.
A week ago, Tomlin also didn't announce his starter in advance before Byron Leftwich played into the second quarter of a 23-7 victory over the Lions. Roethlisberger didn't play, but Tomlin said earlier this week he would get in against the Giants.
"It's not finalized of yet, no," Tomlin said. "Similar to last week, some of those decisions are made last minute in the preseason. That's just how it goes."
Roethlisberger worked with the starting offense most of this week at training camp, an indication he will start. The Steelers want Roethlisberger to get some work during the preseason because he cannot play or practice with the team once his suspension begins. His punishment is expected to be cut to four games before the season starts.
Tomlin plans to play the starters for 24 snaps, which should take them into the second quarter. Last week, Tomlin said the starting quarterback would get only eight to 12 snaps, but Leftwich wound up taking twice that amount. Tomlin didn't say if Leftwich would play against New York.
Tomlin wants to see more of former Bills lineman Jonathan Scott at right tackle. That might be a sign that recently signed Flozell Adams is having difficulty making the adjustment from left tackle, the position he played for 13 seasons, to right tackle. Adams allowed a sack against Detroit.
"We just want to see Jonathan Scott," Tomlin said. "We've got some guys that are working, so we want to see them."
Punter Daniel Sepulveda will kick off, a chore normally handled by kicker Jeff Reed. Rookie wide receiver Antonio Brown will return kicks a week after catching a touchdown pass against Detroit. Outside linebacker Jason Worilds, a second round draft pick, will play after sitting out against Detroit because of an injury.
Rookie running back Jonathan Dwyer isn't expected to play because of a shoulder injury, the latest problem that's sidelined him. The sixth-round draft pick was expected to compete to be the backup to Rashard Mendenhall, but has constantly missed practice.
"The reality is he's not on the field, so he's not helping himself," Tomlin said.
The Steelers are all but wrapped up with camp -- only a morning walkthrough on Friday remains -- and Tomlin is hoping they don't lose focus once they return to their practice facility in Pittsburgh next week.
"We're going to lose some of the things that come with training camp, but we are still very much in the development of our football team. Our goals and focus remain the same. We need to determine who are the 53 [players on the season-opening roster] and the roles within them," he said.
Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press
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