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Steelers' plan is for Landry Jones to start at QB given Big Ben uncertainty

The Steelers will proceed as if Landry Jones is the starting quarterback Sunday against the Chiefs because "he's the one that's healthy," coach Mike Tomlin said Tuesday.

The Steelers will monitor the progress of Ben Roethlisberger, who is sidelined with a sprained MCL and bone bruise, andMichael Vick, who has a hamstring injury. That progress willdetermine their availability in practices or games, starting with Wednesday's practice.

"We'll build a comprehensive plan around Landry," Tomlin told reporters. "Who is the backup quarterback? I don't know. ... I'm more concerned about getting Landry ready."

Roethlisberger said on his weekly appearance with 93.7 The Fan Pittsburgh that he "would assume that Landry and I would split the first-team reps."

Jones passed for 168 yards and two touchdowns this past Sunday to spark a 25-13 victory over the Cardinals. He relieved Vick, who injured his hamstring after six passing yards in two-plus quarters.

Roethlisberger, who is entering the fourth week of rehab on the sprained MCL, threw in 7-on-7 sessions last week. The biggest step he'll have to take before his return is being able to protect himself from a pass rush and move laterally, which Roethlisberger has said is a bigger challenge than planting and throwing.

If Roethlisberger doesn't crack the lineup this week, he should be ready for the highly anticipated matchup with the undefeated Cincinnati Bengals at Heinz Field on Nov. 1.

Roethlisberger said coaches will determine his status and he may participate in the first period of practice and gauge how he feels from there. If he doesn't feel 100 percent, Roethlisberger doesn't want to take reps from Jones, he said.

Tomlin didn't outline specifics of Pittsburgh's practice approach and said he has "no idea" what Roethlisberger will be capable of doing this week.

"It's going to have to be a feel thing, a comfort level," Roethlisberger told 93.7. "Can I make moves in the pocket? Does it hurt when I drop back from under center? Does it hurt when I roll out to the left, to the right? Sliding up in the pocket after a deep set off a play-action fake?

"Just things like that, because obviously I threw last week and it felt good throwing, so that part -- we can check that box off and we'll just continue."

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