Leftwich ready for starting role
By: Mike Bires
Beaver County Times
Wednesday August 25, 2010

PITTSBURGH — Byron Leftwich doesn’t know if he’ll start on opening day. If he does, he promises that “I’ll be ready.”

As the Steelers prepare for their third preseason game, coach Mike Tomlin has yet to announce who will start at quarterback Sept. 12 against Atlanta. .

With Ben Roethlisberger sitting out a suspension, it figures to be Leftwich, who’s gotten far more snaps with the first-team offense than Dennis Dixon during the preseason.

But as the debate over who should start rages on among fans and media, Leftwich is taking a casual wait-and-see approach. He doesn’t seem to mind that Tomlin has yet to decide.

“I don’t know what decision (the coaches) are going to make,” said Leftwich, who was signed in April right before NFL commissioner Roger Goodell hit Roethlisberger with a four-to-six game suspension. “But if I’m the guy in Week 1, I’ll be ready. I’m OK with where I’m at right now.”

Leftwich hopes to not only start Sunday’s preseason game in Denver; he hopes to play a lot. Not that he’s worrying about it.

“I haven’t really thought about it. We haven’t talked about it. I haven’t been told anything,” he said. “As players, you want to play the whole game. But they’ve been making the decisions and they’ve been doing a good job with it, so whatever they come up with, we’ll be fine with it.”

Leftwich started the first preseason game against Detroit, but Roethlisberger started the game against the Giants.

Roethlisberger said Wednesday that he has no idea if he’ll start in Denver or if he’ll even play.

“You guys (in the media) usually find out the same time I do,” he said.

The only definitive thing Tomlin said about his QBs is that third-stringer Dennis Dixon will get to take some snaps with the first-team offense in Denver.

“I intend to give Dennis some looks with the first group against some good people,” Tomlin said. “He’s earned that.”

Meanwhile, Leftwich refused to say if he thinks he’s earned the right to start on opening day. He even said he wouldn’t be shocked if Dixon gets the nod.

“Nothing surprises me in this league,” he said. “I just try to do whatever I can. Hopefully, I am that guy.”