By Teresa Varley
Quarterback Charlie Batch was at practice on Sunday for the first time since suffering a broken collarbone against the Philadelphia Eagles in the preseason opener at Heinz Field.
Batch was injured in the second quarter of the game and although he handed off for one play, he knew that he couldn't throw the ball with the pain that he was feeling.
"When I got up it was a little numb," said Batch. "That happens every once in a while. I kind of just shook it off. When I went to take the handoff I knew something wasn't right. I handed the ball off. I knew the next play was going to be a pass so I took a knee so Dennis could get warmed up."
Batch, who has his arm in a sling after undergoing surgery, is ready for the road to recovery.
"I feel pretty good right now," said Batch. "I am excited and ready for rehab to start on Tuesday."
It was the first opportunity Batch has had to be around his teammates since the injury, and there were some mixed emotions he was feeling.
"It was good to get out here and see the guys, but at the same time disheartening because I couldn't be part of it at this point," said Batch. "It was something good for me to be out here though."
At times during practice Batch would call things out even though he was on the sidelines, something that just kind of came naturally as he ran the plays through his head.
"I was doing that," he said with a smile. "You have to stay that way."
The Steelers signed quarterback Byron Leftwich to fill the void left by Batch's injury, which is expected to be a four-to-six week recovery time. It's not known at this point what will happen with Batch's roster spot, something the team has plenty of time to decide.
"We will make that decision when we have to," said head coach Mike Tomlin. "Right now, we are just evaluating everything day-to-day. There are so many things that could happen between now and when we have to make that roster cut that it is a waste of time to speculate on those at this point. People can get hurt, and so forth and so on, so we don't waste time worrying about that at this point."
Batch feels the same way.
"All I can do is worry about getting healthy and right," he said.