Brett Keisel will take his time before deciding on future

PITTSBURGH -- I had a chance to catch up with Pittsburgh Steelers defensive end Brett Keisel Wednesday afternoon as he made a brief stop at his locker following practice.

Keisel, who suffered a season-ending triceps injury in the Steelers' 35-32 loss to the New Orleans Saints did not have time to do an interview but I was able to glean the following:

  • Keisel isn't in any rush to make a decision about his future and why should he be? The 13th-year veteran has plenty of time to weigh his options and decide whether he wants to keep playing. Keisel is signed through 2015 but the Steelers may release “Da Beard” after this season given his advanced football age of 36 and the reality that he has to come back from a serious injury. Here is a serious question if Keisel does intend to keep playing: If the Steelers have to choose between keeping him or Cam Thomas is it really even a choice? Keisel had 22 tackles, 12 quarterback pressures, a sack and an interception in 12 games. Thomas, who also only has one year left on his contract, has 19 tackles, five quarterback pressures and a half-a-sack in 13 games.

  • The biggest consideration for Keisel as far as his football future is whether he wants to put himself through the grueling rehabilitation that will be required for him to return. Keisel is looking at a four-month process and that is after he is strong enough to start working out fully. And there are no guarantees even if he makes it back that the Steelers -- or any other team -- will make room for him. Keisel has accomplished so much in the NFL and the former seventh-round draft pick has nothing left to prove. But Keisel is also as competitive as they come and if he feels like he can still play in this league that may drive him to come back so he can try to finish on his terms.