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Steelers notebook: Miller, Taylor and Batch placed on injured reserve

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Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
Steelers tight end Heath Miller is helped off the field in the fourth quarter against the Bengals on Sunday, Dec. 23, 2012, at Heinz Field.
By Alan Robinson
Wednesday, Dec. 26, 2012, 11:56 a.m.

Cornerback Ike Taylor (ankle), tight end Heath Miller (knee) and running back Baron Batch (arm) were placed Wednesday on the injured reserve list, officially ending their seasons.

Miller will have surgery Thursday to repair three ligaments in his right knee. He won't estimate when he might return from an injury that requires extensive rehabilitation, saying: “I'm going to take it day by day, get better each day and see where that takes me.”

Added to the 53-man roster were tight end Jamie McCoy, safety Damon Cromartie-Smith and linebacker Marshall McFadden. Defensive back Walter McFadden and wide receiver Bert Reed joined the practice squad.

• Miller is expected to be chosen Thursday by his teammates as the Steelers' MVP. He would be the first tight end to win the award since its inception in 1969. “It's an honor; it would be humbling,” Miller said. “But the overriding factor is the disappointment of the season and not obviously doing what we set out to do.”

• Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger expects to play the entire game Sunday against the Browns, meaningless or not. He wants to get a jump start on next season, and he said the best way to do that is to win the final game of 2012. “We want to finish strong; I want to finish strong. I'm going to go out there and give it my all. I'm not going to quit on this team or the franchise or these fans,” he said.

• Right tackle Mike Adams (ankle) returned to practice Wednesday. Held out were cornerbacks Curtis Brown (ankle) and Keenan Lewis (knee), wide receiver Mike Wallace (hip) and safety Troy Polamalu (day off).

• The Browns are down to their third-string quarterback. With Brandon Weeden and Colt McCoy missing practice Wednesday due to right shoulder injuries, Thad Lewis took first-team snaps in practice. Elevated from the practice squad Monday, Lewis could make his NFL debut against the Steelers. The Browns also signed free-agent quarterback Josh Johnson, who spent four seasons in Tampa Bay.

The Steelers must beat the Browns to avoid their first losing season since 2003 (6-10). “We want to prove to ourselves we can win,” defensive end Brett Keisel said. “It's been a tough stretch. We want to finish this season out strong, the way we're capable of doing.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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