Friday, August 18, 2006
By Ray Fittipaldo, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

The way Ben Roethlisberger played late last season with a thumb injury, maybe it wasn't so bad that he dinged it off a lineman's shoulder pads on the final play of practice Wednesday. After all, the Steelers claimed their fifth Super Bowl championship with Ben's bum thumb.

"I'm sure some fans are happy about this," Roethlisberger teased after practice yesterday in Latrobe.

Roethlisberger sat out practice yesterday and could miss the preseason game tomorrow against the Minnesota Vikings, but his injury is not considered serious.

Coach Bill Cowher listed Roethlisberger as questionable for the game with sprained ligaments in his right (throwing) thumb. Roethlisberger and Cowher indicated that he will be day-to-day.

"It's one of those things ... we're going to let it heal up," Roethlisberger said. "It's just a strain of the ligaments. It's a good day to take a day off and let it heal. We're going day by day. It feels better than it did yesterday and, hopefully, tomorrow it will feel better than it did today."

This is the third consecutive season Roethlisberger has injured the thumb. He hurt it at the tail end of the 2004 season and again last season, sometimes playing with a wrap on it. The thumb never has prevented him from playing in a game.
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