Friday, August 03, 2007

Mike Tomlin Announces Hall of Fame Game Strategy

Steelers' head coach Mike Tomlin announced Friday that, heading into the first game of the preseason, it was his "intention to play Ben [Roethlisberger] a little less than most of the starters and go with Charlie Batch after that."

On the surface that would seem to be a prudent move, after all there isn't much sense in risking an injury to the injury prone starting quarterback. However a look back at 2006 gives one pause. Coming off their Super Bowl victory the Steelers limited Mr. Roethlisberger to eight passing attempts during the entire preseason (the average starting quarterback threw 20.29 passes during last season's preseason). Of course the fact that Mr. Roethlisberger was also coming off his motorcycle accident certainly didn't help matters (though at the time Bill Cowher indicated that Mr. Roethlisberger was physically ready to play) but the paucity of passing attempts -- and live game work with his new wide receiver, Santonio Holmes -- also contributed to the woeful early season performance by the Steelers starting quarterback.

So as Mike Tomlin and Bruce Arians make their plans for the preseason here's hoping that they don't give in to the temptation to be overly protective/conservative with their QB.

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