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With Roethlisberger out, St. Pierre returns to Steelers

| Tuesday, Sept. 5, 2006

Brian St. Pierre, a former Pittsburgh Steelers backup quarterback cut by the Baltimore Ravens last weekend, did what he declined to do last season by returning to the Steelers on Monday.

St. Pierre joins rookie quarterback Omar Jacobs on the practice squad, and one of the two will be activated as Charlie Batch's backup for Thursday night's season-opening game against Miami. Coach Bill Cowher will make up his mind after watching both in practice.

The Steelers had to scramble to find a quarterback after starter Ben Roethlisberger had an emergency appendectomy Sunday. He will miss at least one game.

St. Pierre, a former Boston College quarterback, was a fifth-round pick by the Steelers in 2003 and shuttled between their active roster and the practice squad before being released during the final preseason roster cutdown last year.

"To miss the Super Bowl it was tough, that's just the way it worked out," St. Pierre said Monday. "I'm just glad to be back."

He had a chance to return to the Steelers when Roethlisberger injured a knee at midseason, but chose to join the Ravens' practice squad. He moved onto the roster for Baltimore's final four games last season, but did not throw any passes.

"I was told by Baltimore I'd be activated the last four games, and I was," St. Pierre said. "I wasn't sure if coming back here would be for only a couple of games with Ben coming back. So I had to make the best business decision."

St. Pierre felt he had more of a future with Baltimore than he did with Pittsburgh. However, that changed when the Ravens added Steve McNair during the offseason to replace Kyle Boller as their starter, then made it clear they would keep only two quarterbacks.

St. Pierre has thrown one pass in the NFL, an incompletion against Buffalo during the final game of the 2004 regular season. He was 7-of-16 for 62 yards, no touchdowns and one interception during the preseason with Baltimore.

"He knows the offense, so I think the coaches have confidence in him," Batch said.

Because St. Pierre has less than four years experience in the NFL, the Steelers do not have to pay him a full season's salary if they release him once Roethlisberger returns.

To make room for St. Pierre on their practice squad, the Steelers released fullback John Kuhn for the second time in three days. They cut him Saturday, only to add him to their practice squad when he wasn't claimed by another team. Additional Information:

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