Ben Roethlisberger said he
is "definitely making big progress," but the Steelers quarterback did not commit to playing Monday night in San Francisco.
Roethlisberger, who sustained a high-ankle sprain last Thursday, has yet to practice this week.
Coach Mike Tomlin said Tuesday that Roethlisberger has to practice at least one day on a limited basis if he is going to play against the 49ers.
"I'm going to do everything I can to be out there," Roethlisberger said. "I don't know if it's my decision. If it was just a matter of pain I'd be out there. It's physically unable to do certain things."
Roethlisberger said he has been getting "non-stop" treatment as he tries to regain range of motion in his left ankle. He got fitted for a plastic brace today, something that could provide needed support if he practices this week and plays in San Francisco.
The eighth-year veteran said he massage he received last night helped considerably in bringing down the swelling in his injured ankle.
"It actually looks like an ankle now instead of one big mass of fluid down there," Roethlisberger said.
Roethlisberger said the pain in his ankle is actually worse than after he hurt it against the Browns and then returned to lead the Steelers to a 14-3 win. He said
"It's one of those things, the second half of that game, you're playing off adrenaline, you're playing off emotion," Roethlisberger said. "It's amazing what adrenaline and wanting to be out there for your guys does."
Roethlisberger hasn't missed a game since December of 2009, when he didn't play in Baltimore after experiencing post-concussion symptoms.
Roethlisberger has been walking for stretches at a time without the aid of a protective boot, and that he and the Steelers are "playing in by ear" as far as when he tries to practice.
The Steelers' playing on Monday night could be significant as far as whether Roethlisberger will be able to suit up for the game.
"Today's Wednesday if you ask me, so we've got an extra day," Roethlisberger said, "which is a huge blessing."