Saturday, August 13, 2011

Preseason: Redskins 16, Steelers 7

Ike Taylor breaks thumb in preseason opener

By Mike Batista

I didn't watch the Steelers' preseason opener on Friday night. I watch very little preseason football. During the game, however, I happened across a photo of Ben Roethlisberger with his leg wedged under diving Redskins cornerback Kenny Barnes. Roethlisberger appears to be awkwardly trying to get rid of the ball.

I thought the Steelers' season was over right then and there, 30 days before kickoff in Baltimore. In that still photograph, it looked like Roethlisberger's knee could have been torn up. So I scoured the Internet for any news on the play. I must have refreshed the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Steelers page more times than Nayda Suleman refreshes diapers.

Fortunately, Roethlisberger's leg and knee did not make any news. But that doesn't mean the Steelers escaped their first preseason game with a clean bill of health.

The most serious injury was Ike Taylor's broken thumb. Not that big a deal, considering Taylor can't catch anyway. He'll likely need surgery but should be back in time for the season opener.

What I found a little annoying, though, were the rest of the injuries. Ryan Clark left with a stinger and Roethlisberger dinged his hand and hip. Neither injury was serious, but those scrapes, combined with all the Steelers who have sat out practices with various ticky tack injuries, make me think that maybe the Steelers really are getting old. They seem like duffers getting hurt at the company softball game.

That's why signing Jerricho Cotchery is a good move. This team could use any insurance it can get at any position. In my mind, the best thing I read about Cotchery is that he knows where the first down marker is. I like that.

On Cotchery's Wikipedia page, it says he was born with six fingers on his left hand. Maybe he can loan Taylor one.

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