Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger (since I'm getting carpal tunnel writing that last name, from now on we'll just refer to him as Big Ben) returned to practice Monday. He missed all of last week after suffering a concussion in Pittsburgh's 31-0 win over Cleveland in the final game of the regular season.
Big Ben says he will play against the Chargers in the AFC Divisional playoffs on Sunday at Heinz Field. Roethlisberger has had at least three concussions in his NFL career. The last reported one came in 2006. In the two weeks following the injury, Big Ben was intercepted seven times (two of them were returned for touchdowns) in a pair of Steelers' losses.
Big Ben is not exactly good at avoiding contact from opposing defenses. He was sacked 46 times this season (only Matt Cassell, with 47, was sacked more). The Chargers got him four times in their meeting back in November. that was Ron Rivera's second game as defensive coordinator. Now that he has settled into his play calling, expect the Chargers' pass rush to put as many big hits on Big Ben as possible.