As the football-following world waits for the puff of white smoke that will let us all know whether Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger will be riding a white horse (a really big white horse) in to M&T Bank Stadium on Sunday to save his team for another batch (see what I did there?) of turnovers, the most specific report regarding his availability has emerged.
ESPN’s Ed Werder reports that Roethlisberger has a 35-percent chance of playing.
Though we’re not quite sure how anyone has arrived at that number, each team has to engage in a similar exercise every week. “Doubtful” means there’s a 25-percent chance a player will play. “Questionable” connotes to a 50-50 coin flip. (Despite popular belief, “probable” doesn’t mean 75 percent, but that there’s a virtual certainty the player will be available for normal duty.)
If the number really is 35, the Steelers will have a hard time choosing between “doubtful” and “questionable” when the time comes to turn in the injury report. Maybe they’ll say he’s doubtionable.
Regardless of the label, we’ll be shocked if he doesn’t play. The notion that the dislocated rib threatens his aorta came from no one but Ben himself, and if he’s in no danger of serious injury the question becomes whether a less-than-100-percent Roethlisberger is better than the alternative.
Based on what we saw last week in Cleveland, is it even a question?