The Pittsburgh Steelers said quarterback Ben Roethlisberger injured his right foot during the last half-hour of the team's final training-camp practice Thursday in Latrobe, Pa., but it wasn't immediately certain how badly he was hurt or how long he would be out.
NFL.com's Steve Wyche reports that Roethlisberger didn't suffer a torn or ruptured Achilles tendon, although more tests could be done.
Roethlisberger had an ice pack on the back of the ankle when he was carted off the field at the end of the workout, with offensive coordinator Bruce Arians accompanying him. Roethlisberger didn't talk to reporters, but he could be overheard saying, "Oh, it just feels great. It feels like a car ran over it."
As the Steelers' starting offense practiced against the starting defense, left tackle Max Starks couldn't handle a rush from linebacker James Harrison, the 2008 NFL Defensive Player of the Year. Starks went down to one knee and accidently tripped Roethlisberger, who stayed on the turf for about five minutes.
After being treated by athletic trainer John Norwig, Roethlisberger spent the rest of practice sitting on a cooler. He noticeably limped as he gingerly walked from the sideline to join the end-of-practice huddle at midfield. He draped a towel over his head before leaving on the golf cart.
Normally, any player seriously hurt during a Steelers practice is immediately removed from the field and taken to a hospital -- an indication that Roethlisberger's injury might be no more serious than a sprain. Starks suggested such, saying: "My feet are fine. I don't have a sprained ankle."
Starks isn't exactly certain how the two-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback was hurt, but he didn't hear any popping or tearing noises as Roethlisberger went down, sounds that might signal a serious injury.
"James Harrison was bull-rushing," Starks said. "... I'm not sure I knocked him into him (Roethlisberger) or what happened behind me. I was busy trying to block the defensive MVP. He (Roethlisberger) got tripped up and fell down."
Roethlisberger didn't tell any of his teammates how he felt, though he could be heard saying, "I'll be all right."
"He didn't want to talk about it now, but I'm sure he'll address us upstairs," Starks said.
Roethlisberger's injury was the second major mishap of the Steelers' three-week-old training camp -- right guard Darnell Stapleton needed knee surgery less than a week into workouts -- and it brought an abrupt end to what might have been the best of the quarterback's six NFL camps. Roethlisberger has shown a strong, accurate arm for several weeks after having some soreness for several days, causing Arians to say, "His arm's really alive."
Roethlisberger is certain not to play in the Steelers' preseason game Saturday against the Washington Redskins. The Steelers have two more preseason games after that before opening the season Sept. 10 against the Tennessee Titans.
The last time the Steelers were coming off a Super Bowl-winning season -- in 2006 -- Roethlisberger sustained severe facial injuries during a motorcycle crash six weeks before camp began, then missed the opener after undergoing an appendectomy.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.