Daniel Sepulveda, backup quarterback Byron Leftwich and kicker Jeff Reed dressed Sunday afternoon for the final, fall weekend with a noticeably vacant locker stall in their midst.
The locker belongs to Ben Roethlisberger.
"We're looking forward to having him back, absolutely," Sepulveda said of the Steelers' quarterback, who sat out the last contest of his four-game NFL suspension.
Today, Roethlisberger may reconvene football conversations with his teammates and coaches, return to the Steelers' South Side facility, rejoin meetings and practice this off week, and resume his on-field play and off-field persona that has attracted detractors since a March incident in Milledgeville, Ga.
"I like the character of this team," receiver and offensive captain Hines Ward said after their Roethlisberger-less record fell to 3-1 with a last-minute, 17-14 loss to Baltimore at Heinz Field. "I like the players that we have. And we get our franchise guy back."
"I'm excited to have Ben back," added linebacker Lawrence Timmons, after a game-high 13 tackles and one of the Steelers' two quarterback hurries. "A Pro Bowl quarterback. Two-time Super Bowl champion. Just get ready for Cleveland."