Earlier this week, Steelers coach Mike Tomlin left open the possibility of quarterback Dennis Dixon seeing spot duty even after Ben Roethlisberger returns to the starting lineup.
When asked about that chance Thursday, offensive coordinator Bruce Arians said, "Absolutely zero because he's the backup, and we only have two in there."
Arians said the Steelers don't want the fleet-footed Dixon running the ball in sub packages such as the Wildcat for the same reasons he stated during training camp: it is took risky for the 6-foot-3, 209-pounder.
"He's an extremely good talent as far as speed, and when a play breaks down and he can improvise, that's when he'll be dangerous," Arians said of Dixon. "But if you start designing runs for a quarterback, especially one of his stature, he's going to get broken in half."
Dixon scored on a 24-yard run in his first NFL start last Sunday.
The fourth-quarter play, Arians said, was designed to be a pass to Mewelde Moore. Dixon kept the ball following a fake handoff to wide receiver Mike Wallace since he had a clear path to the end zone.
Arians said there were no designed runs for Dixon in the Ravens' game because of the risk of an injury, especially with Tyler Palko as the only healthy quarterback behind Dixon.
Arians said he did not limit Dixon much against the Ravens because of the faith he has in the second-year man.
"I felt extremely confident that we were going to win that ballgame the other night with Dennis, and we should have," Arians said.
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.