Reporting Paul Martino
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Two veterans – Charlie Batch and Plaxico Burress – will form a major part of the Steelers’ offense when they travel to Cleveland Sunday.
And their backup quarterback is a guy who was coaching high school football just a week ago.
Even so, the Steelers like their chances.
Wide receiver Burress was welcomed back after he returned to the Steelers’locker room following a seven-year absence.
But don’t worry about buying a new jersey, he’s keeping the old number: 80.
“Lot of my friends and family are going through the closet and I told ‘em, ‘hey, knock some of the dust off, let’s get back to work,’” Burress said.
Burress, home for the holidays and back on the practice field with the Steelers.
“It’s a comfort level with a lot of the guys still here when I was here,” he said. “Just walking around and seeing some of the old faces. I’m happy to get back playing football. But at the same time it’s a comfort level.”
Burress was drafted by the Steelers 12 years ago.
He played here for five seasons.
But a lot’s happened since then.
He spent nearly two years in prison for a gun possession charge, after his weapon discharged in a crowded New York club.
Burress says it’s time to move on.
“I’m just going to keep moving forward,” he said. “Obviously, I’ve been through some things, but at the same time I’m still here. I feel good and I’m blessed with the opportunity to be here with these guys and play some football.”
Burress will be taking passes from the aging veteran quarterback Batch.
His backup is Brian Hoyer, a quarterback, who just last week was coaching high school football.
“I’m going to be as ready as I can,” Hoyer said. “Like I said, there’s limited time and limited reps.”
The Steelers head to Cleveland Sunday.
The game kicks off at 1 p.m. on KDKA-TV.