PDA

View Full Version : Steelers gladly accept ‘boring,’ mature Big Ben



AZ_Steeler
08-21-2008, 02:02 PM
This is Yahoo's Training camp coverage about the Steelers...

Link to coverage (http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/news;_ylt=Ap3T79B4xyBQOXPLvafVfnFDubYF?slug=jc-pittsburgh082108&prov=yhoo&type=lgns)

PITTSBURGH – Mike Tomlin mulled the thought for a moment, but came up empty. The second-year coach didn’t have any really memorable story about Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.

“Ben is kind of boring,” Tomlin said.

Somehow you get the feeling that Pittsburgh fans took no offense to the statement. They’re more than happy to take a Pro Bowl quarterback fresh off a team-record 32 touchdown passes and armed with a reported six-year, $102 million extension, even if he doesn’t light up the nightlife anymore.

It sure beats the alternative, such as when Roethlisberger nearly ended it all with a really bad Robbie Knievel impersonation in 2006. Or the time he mugged for cameras after a few too many refreshments.

Yep, boring is just fine off the field. While Tomlin wasn’t around for the previous incidents, others have seen the progression.

“He’s terrific … he’s a different guy. I shouldn’t say it that way. He has always been a good guy,” Pittsburgh owner Dan Rooney said. “Sometimes when you’re young, you drive a motorcycle without a helmet. It’s not what anybody wants, but it happens. He has matured that way as far as not taking crazy risks anymore and he’s also matured in how to handle people.

“That’s a big thing that young kids need to learn when they come in here as high draft choices. The way Pittsburgh loves the Steelers, it’s like the old saying that sometimes there can be too much love. It can get overbearing and you have to learn how to handle it as a young guy. Some never get used to it. But he’s doing really well.”

Really well is an understatement. Roethlisberger had one of the quietest 32-touchdown pass seasons you’ll ever see, overshadowed in large part by the record-breaking 50 scores that Tom Brady threw for New England and the breakout performance of Cleveland’s Derek Anderson.

What has happened for Roethlisberger, 26, is about trust, which earned him the biggest contract of this offseason and in team history.

That trust is a byproduct of the responsibility Roethlisberger has taken with his play. While some people would say that Roethliberger’s touchdown record was a result of the Steelers running game declining last season, it was accompanied by a sharp decrease in interceptions.

In other words, despite taking more chances with the pass, Roethlisberger didn’t let that lead to an increase in mistakes.

“I think it’s (offensive coordinator) Bruce Arian’s offense, the offense that he put in,” said Roethlisberger, who threw just 11 interceptions in ‘07 after a league-high 23 in ‘06. “I think it’s the evolution of the NFL. It’s changing; it’s becoming a passing league and you have to keep up with the times. I think it’s the big playmakers we have at receiver, tight end and running back. The combination of all those things. “

OK, but what about you?

“It’s an understanding of what’s going on, another year of maturing and understanding offenses and defenses, where my guys are going to be,” Roethlisberger said. Then, with a wink, he added, “Luck.”

That’s a nice bit of self-deprecation. The truth is that Roethlisberger was given more responsibility by Arians, who took over after former offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt left for Arizona. Roethlisberger, Whisenhunt and former coach Bill Cowher had their moments when they clashed about the play-calling. Now, Roethlisberger has an offensive coordinator and coach who are willing to trust him with both the offense and a leadership role.

“That says a lot that Bruce was willing to trust me with a lot of the play-calling, especially in his first year as coordinator, his first year running the offense with the stuff we have,” said Roethlisberger, who had combined for just 35 touchdown passes the previous two seasons. “Putting that faith and trust in me to run the things he calls, change the things he calls, run the no-huddle. It’s nice that he has the faith in me.”


http://d.yimg.com/a/p/sp/tools/med/2008/08/ipt/1219266264.jpg
Photo Roethlisberger with Tomlin last season.
(AP Photo/Ken Blaze)

Specifically, Roethlisberger was allowed to audible more than at any point in the first three years of his career. There were times when Arians allowed Roethlisberger to call the plays himself, particularly as the team went with more no-huddle offense toward the end of the season and into the playoffs against Jacksonville.

That may not sound unusual, but there was a time when Roethlisberger, for all his impressive early performances, was still considered a liability as a thrower. As a rookie in the AFC Championship game against New England in 2005, the Patriots ran a complicated zone coverage that essentially challenged Roethlisberger to beat them by daring him to throw.

In his second and third years, Roethlisberger was considered by many defensive coaches to be little more than a talented deep thrower who capitalized on a strong running game. Last year, however, he took a serious step forward.

“The book on him going into last year was that if you could get the Steelers into a throwing game and keep him throwing short, eventually he was going to make a few mistakes,” said one NFL head coach who declined to be identified. “I wouldn’t say he’s Peyton Manning or Tom Brady yet, but he really progressed last season. He was much more precise, much more careful with the ball. He’s not just firing deep passes anymore. This is a guy who can run a 10-play drive where he has to throw a lot.”

In the process, Roethlisberger has earned the respect of teammates and coaches who see the preparation.

“Working hard at practice, being consistent, being a good player, that’s how you become a leader,” Steelers wide receiver Hines Ward said. “I think Ben has done it that way. Now, he’s starting to be more vocal about it, but he has to be. He’s a quarterback. … Before, we had a lot of leaders, older guys like Jerome Bettis and Alan Faneca who would do the talking. Now, with them gone, it’s on Ben.”

Troyisabeast_43
08-21-2008, 06:51 PM
You can already see this in the preseason games how Ben looks as if already he has gotten better from last season and looks as if he is on his way to a terrific season this year. Next to Tom Brady and Peyton it's hard to argue that anybody right now in the National Football League is as good or better then Ben Roethlisberger.

yinzer
08-21-2008, 07:49 PM
You can already see this in the preseason games how Ben looks as if already he has gotten better from last season and looks as if he is on his way to a terrific season this year. Next to Tom Brady and Peyton it's hard to argue that anybody right now in the National Football League is as good or better then Ben Roethlisberger.

agreed. brady and manning get the hype but ben is right there with them. i would even say ben is better. neither manning or brady are mobile. :yellowthumb:

dawgs
08-21-2008, 09:13 PM
agreed. brady and manning get the hype but ben is right there with them. i would even say ben is better. neither manning or brady are mobile. :yellowthumb:


I never thought he was boring. He's not better then manning and brady. Those guys are insane. ben is no question near there level, but manning and brady have been putting up the same stats for years.

steelcityrockers
08-21-2008, 09:19 PM
Ben is in the Top-5 QB's for sure. Maybe number three. No higher. Like Kosar here said, Brady has been remarkable efficient since taking over in 01. Brady has only really gotten his shot to put up prolific numbers in the last two years or so. Manning has been lighting it up since 1999. 1998 was his rookie year where he still had like (correct me if I am wrong) 3500 yards and 26 touchdowns. There were 28 interceptions in there too, but not too shabby for a rookie.

stillers4me
08-22-2008, 10:35 AM
I'm just grateful his mug isn't all over the national tabloids partying with some silicone enhanced bimbo all offseason. (not referring to any one in particular here.......:greengrin:)

steelcitysfinestXL
08-22-2008, 12:25 PM
agreed. brady and manning get the hype but ben is right there with them. i would even say ben is better. neither manning or brady are mobile. :yellowthumb:

Im not gonna say Ben is better than Manning or Brady, but i def. see your point with mobility. The thing about them is, they dont have to be mobile! They know their offenses inside and out. So when the blitz is on they can read, progress and get rid of the ball, instead of breaking 5 tackles and hurling a 50 yd td!

Ben is maturing in this offesnse very nicely. If him and Arians can stay together and collectively build this O together, I can see Ben being Brady/Manning or better in the next season or 2!

steelerschick1220
08-22-2008, 12:50 PM
I would say that Ben is the third best QB in the league. I have been very pleased with his level of play in the preseason. I think he will have a big year.

There is nothing wrong with him being boring. I think it makes him seem kind of normal.

ejsteeler
08-22-2008, 12:58 PM
He's well on the road to earning the big payday he got. Very bright for out collevtive future as Steeler fans. :yellowthumb:

Koopa
08-22-2008, 04:09 PM
lol at derek andersons "breakout performance" the dude is a ****ing bum, he'll suck *** this year even with the weapons he has..............

i like boring ben too....... no need to be riding a motorcycle and drinking all night when you have millions of dollars invested in you........ i think athletes don't have the right to be normal ppl, cause they have so much counting on them lol

yinzer
08-22-2008, 11:27 PM
Im not gonna say Ben is better than Manning or Brady, but i def. see your point with mobility. The thing about them is, they dont have to be mobile! They know their offenses inside and out. So when the blitz is on they can read, progress and get rid of the ball, instead of breaking 5 tackles and hurling a 50 yd td!

Ben is maturing in this offesnse very nicely. If him and Arians can stay together and collectively build this O together, I can see Ben being Brady/Manning or better in the next season or 2!

so... i got a little homer in me.

dawgs
08-23-2008, 12:24 PM
lol at derek andersons "breakout performance" the dude is a ****ing bum, he'll suck *** this year even with the weapons he has..............

i like boring ben too....... no need to be riding a motorcycle and drinking all night when you have millions of dollars invested in you........ i think athletes don't have the right to be normal ppl, cause they have so much counting on them lol


DA threw 29TDs, so it was a brakeout season. No matter what u think about him or the browns. He threw like 5 the season before. But DA will need to do it again with less picks if he wants to be a top 7 or 8 QB.

steelerfan11
08-23-2008, 12:27 PM
lol at derek andersons "breakout performance" the dude is a ****ing bum, he'll suck *** this year even with the weapons he has..............


:lol:

yinzer
08-23-2008, 05:27 PM
DA threw 29TDs, so it was a brakeout season. No matter what u think about him or the browns. He threw like 5 the season before. But DA will need to do it again with less picks if he wants to be a top 7 or 8 QB.

DA, otherwise known as Douche Andersack, is a turd burgler. come on, man! he sucks!

SteelerSteve
08-24-2008, 06:57 PM
Meh,DA will probably get benched because everybody wants to see Brady. then Quinn will come in and be decent for a few games, then struggle and everyone will want DA back and the whole organization will be destroyed by a QB controversy. Okay, the bears have been decimated by a QB controversy, the Browns organization is already the NFL's version of a nuclear waste dump.:lol: