Steelers' Batch accepts two-year deal
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The quarterback position has been in the news too long this month to suit the Steelers. At least, this time it is not bad news because the team announced that Charlie Batch had returned by signing a two-year contract.
Batch, 35, has been with the Steelers the past eight seasons, mostly as their No. 2 quarterback. He became an unrestricted free agent March 5 but both he and Steelers officials said he likely would re-sign and, after his return from an extended trip to Hawaii for a meeting of NFL Player Association representatives, he did just that.
It is possible Batch might not return to his No. 2 job behind Ben Roethlisberger in 2010 because Dennis Dixon is expected to compete with him. Dixon moved up to No. 2 and stayed there after Batch broke his wrist in the Nov. 22 game in Kansas City.
Veterans such as Batch are due to join their younger teammates Monday to begin offseason workouts that include mostly running, lifting and viewing videotape. Coach Mike Tomlin has scheduled the first two of 14 allowed spring practices April 19 and 21.
It is still unknown whether starting quarterback Ben Roethlisberger will turn out for the Monday workouts, which are voluntary and which some players often do not make. He has not spoken publicly nor been seen publicly since a 20-year-old woman accused him of sexual assault in Georgia early the morning of March 5. Police have not charged him and continue their investigation.
Batch joins safety Ryan Clark as the second unrestricted free agent to re-sign with the Steelers since free agency began March 5. Five other free agents signed with the Steelers from other teams. None of the other Steelers' free agents has signed elsewhere yet.