Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger could miss up to six weeks after undergoing knee surgery.
Roethlisberger left Sunday's loss to the Miami Dolphins before eventually returning in the third quarter to finish the game.
It was later revealed he has a torn meniscus in his left knee that required what was described as a "clean up procedure" but wouldn't keep him sidelined long.
"Doc told me at halftime he was pretty sure I had a meniscus tear and that I probably was going to have surgery on Monday," Roethlisberger told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
"I went back in because I thought it still gave us a chance to win. Obviously, I wasn't able to move as well, but my adrenaline was so high. I don't think it really affected any of my throws. I just wish I had played better. It would have been a great story to come back and win."
The Steelers were cautiously optimistic Roethlisberger would be ready to return for a Week 9 divisional showdown with the Baltimore Ravens following a bye week. However, the veteran's long injury history has led the team to take their time.
"Doc says my knee looked good, but there still was some stuff in there from when I had my bone bruise last season in St. Louis," Roethlisberger said.
"He said that might keep me out a little longer than just a simple meniscus tear. Maybe an extra week or so. But there's no way to put an exact timetable on it. It all depends on my pain and how I feel."
Big Ben's biggest disappointment? Not getting a shot at fellow veteran quarterback Tom Brady this weekend when the Steelers host the New England Patriots.
"It's going to kill me not to be able to go against [Brady] Sunday," Roethlisberger added. "I've said many times I think he's one of the best quarterbacks of all time and the best one going right now. You know me. I love to battle the best."
Pittsburgh's powerful offense will surely take a huge hit during Roethlisberger's absence, as backup Landry Jones managed a 58.2 completion rate and 77.3 passer rating on 55 attempts in his place last season.