Published: Nov. 19, 2012 at 05:34 p.m.
Updated: Nov. 20, 2012 at 08:51 a.m.

Charlie Batch now Pittsburgh Steelers' starting QB

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The Pittsburgh Steelers' quarterback position has become a growing problem.

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Charlie Batch will start Sunday against the Cleveland Browns, NFL.com's Aditi Kinkhabwala reported, citing a source with direct knowledge of the Steelers' plans. Kinkhabwala confirmed that backup quarterback Byron Leftwich sustained fractured ribs during the Steelers' 13-10 loss to the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday night.

With Ben Roethlisberger also expected to be out with shoulder and rib injuries, Batch will be asked to start for the Steelers at age 37. He has been with the Steelers for eight years, with three starts in the last four seasons, and he played fairly well in a win over the St. Louis Rams last season.

Even if the Steelers are confident in Batch, this is another tough body blow for their AFC North chances. They are two games back of the Ravens, and a loss against the Browns essentially would end the division race. The Steelers also have to worry about the AFC wild-card race if they keep dropping games.

The Browns are better than their 2-8 record indicates, with five losses by seven points or less. They played the Ravens tough twice. It's now up to Batch to keep the Steelers' division hopes afloat.

Follow Gregg Rosenthal on Twitter @greggrosenthal.
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