PITTSBURGH - Another week, another injury for Ben Roethlisberger.
Roethlisberger's right thumb injury "is pretty painful," he said Thursday, but the Steelers quarterback is hopeful it won't severely affect his throwing in Sunday's key AFC North game against the Bengals.
The injury, not disclosed until Wednesday, follows injuries to both knees that kept Roethlisberger out of four games. Coach Bill Cowher also said Roethlisberger "tweaked" his ankle during a 26-7 loss to Indianapolis on Monday night, but that injury was not listed on the team's first injury report of the week.
That report, issued late Wednesday afternoon, was the first disclosure of any thumb injury. Neither Roethlisberger norCowher mentioned it after the Colts game.
Roethlisberger said the injury is painful enough that trainers designed a protective device so he could throw in practice Thursday and Friday.
"It's a little sore, but we're going to try and see if we can get by with it," said Roethlisberger, who is listed as probable. "A couple of contraptions hopefully will help it."
Cowher downplayed the injury after practice Thursday.
"Everything's fine. There's no need to go into detail," Cowher said.
"He's ready to play Sunday."
BROWNS: Starting quarterback Trent Dilfer, slowed by sore knees, participated in team drills during practice and remains questionable for Sunday's game against the Jaguars.
CARDINALS: Kicker Neil Rackers pulled a calf muscle in practice and is questionable for Sunday's game at San Francisco. Rookie cornerback Antrel Rolle (knee), the team's top draft pick out of Miami, was back at practice, working out separately from the team with a target of returning Dec. 11 against the Redskins.
VIKINGS: A prosecutor said he hopes to decide within two weeks whether misdemeanor charges should be brought against members of the team for their antics during a boat party in October. One day after the Hennepin County Sheriff's Department determined felony charges were not warranted, prosecutor Steve Tallen said he was examining an inch-thick file about the Oct.6 party aboard a pair of charter boats on Lake Minnetonka. The attorney representing the boat owners and crew has said the party included sex acts and other lewd behavior.
EX-GIANT TROUBLES: Mark Ingram, who starred for the Giants as a receiver in Super Bowl XXV in Tampa against the Bills, admitted in federal District Court in Central Islip, N.Y., on Wednesday that he laundered $100,000 in 2000 for a drug dealer. The case was part of a reverse sting run by undercover FBI agents, pretending to be trying to launder drug money. Ingram, 40, also admitted that in an unrelated 2000 Florida case he had deposited a stolen $130,000 check into his bank account and withdrew $54,000 of it. He faces at least 70 months in prison when he is sentenced on the federal money laundering and bank fraud charges.