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Roethlisberger: 'I'm totally fine'

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Traveling by Jeep, boat and foot, Tribune-Review investigative reporter Carl Prine and photojournalist Justin Merriman covered nearly 2,000 miles over two months along the border with Mexico to report on coyotes — the human traffickers who bring illegal immigrants into the United States. Most are Americans working for money and/or drugs. This series reports how their operations have a major impact on life for residents and the environment along the border — and beyond.

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Monday, Dec. 7, 2009
 

• An 8-yard run by Ben Roethlisberger late in the fourth quarter came after he changed the play at the line of scrimmage, which led to confusion between the Steelers quarterback and running back Rashard Mendenhall.

That Roethlisberger didn't just go down after he turned to hand the ball off to Mendenhall - he encountered an empty backfield - shows just how well he felt while playing in his first game since sustaining a concussion on Nov. 22.

"I'm totally fine," Roethlisberger said.

• Roethlisberger gave the Steelers a chance to win at the end of the game as his "Hail Mary" pass from midfield made it into the end zone.

Limas Sweed appeared to get his hands on the ball, but safety Hiram Eugene knocked it away.

"They had what seemed like 10 guys back there," Roethlisberger said. "With those plays, it's like a one-in-a-million shot."

Said Eugene, who had an interception at the end of the first half: "(Sweed) kind of went up with us, and it hit his hands and one of my player's hands, and I just tried to swat it."

• Strong safety Troy Polamalu (knee), defensive end Travis Kirschke (calf) and quarterback Charle Batch (wrist) didn't play yesterday because of injuries. Joining them on the Steelers' inactives list were cornerback Keenan Lewis, guard Kraig Urbik, offensive tackle Tony Hills, defensive end Sunny Harris and quarterback Tyler Palko.

• Roethlisberger has thrown for over 3,000 yards in four consecutive seasons. Terry Bradshaw and Kordell Stewart are the only other quarterbacks in franchise history to accomplish that feat, and each did it twice. ... Santonio Holmes' 149 receiving yards were a career high. ... Hines Ward has caught at least one pass in 174 consecutive games, which is a team record.

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