Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is another step closer to playing on Sunday night in Baltimore, despite sustaining a concussion (or something close to that) against the Chiefs five days ago.
According to Chuck Finder of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Roethlisberger practiced on Friday with the team.
Roethlisberger reportedly has passed all tests regarding whether his eggs have sufficiently unscrambled after taking a knee to the noggin during overtime of Sunday’s loss. On Thursday, Charley Casserly of CBS reported that Roethlisberger planned to re-enter the game if the Steelers had gotten the ball back in overtime.
But Casserly also pointed out that the league’s new sensitivity to the concussion problem will result in more stringent rules regarding a player’s ability to return after getting his bell rung.
Currently, players who lose consciousness aren’t permitted to come back. But guys like Raiders linebacker Jon Alston, who returned to the November 15 game against the Chiefs after suffering an apparent concussion, are still slipping through the cracks.
The problem is the absence of a clear, objective test for determining when a guy can or can’t come back. Eventually, someone will come up with a medical device that immediately can be used to determine a guy’s status in this regard, and whoever invents the process will probably make enough money to buy an NFL team — and then rig the thing to consistently give his team’s players the green light.