Pittsburgh Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger had an MRI on his ailing ankle this past Friday and while the results were not good, they could have been worse. Word out of Pittsburgh is that Roethlisberger, along with center Maurkice Pouncey, suffered a grade one high ankle sprain. Grade one is the lowest possible grade of high ankle sprain.
Roethlisberger will likely be extremely limited in practice this week, and might not even take the practice field in advance of Monday Night Football. Whether he is unable to play on Monday is another question entirely. Roethlisberger played through the pain on Thursday, which could bode well for his chances to play on Monday. It will really depend on how he responds to rehabilitation this week.
The 49ers pass defense has had some question marks on the deep ball, which could threaten them with guys like Mike Wallace and Antonio Brown. At the same time, if Roethlisberger plays but has limited mobility, we might see the 49ers a little bit more willing to take some risks in the pass rush to get to the Steelers QB. The 49ers have some athletic pass rushers and it would make sense to unleash the hounds on a limited QB. The 49ers have been fairly limited in their use of blitzes, but this game strikes me as an opportunity to open that up if Roethlisberger plays.