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lamberts-lost-tooth
01-07-2009, 09:51 AM
Roethlisberger tops Steelers' question marks
By Mike Prisuta, TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Wednesday, January 7, 2009


In a tournament that began without Tom Brady and has since rid itself of Peyton Manning, Ben Roethlisberger stands alone as the only Super Bowl-winning quarterback on the AFC side of the bracket.

The Ravens' Joe Flacco is a rookie.

The Chargers' Philip Rivers has only been as far as the conference final.

And the Titans' Kerry Collins has been to a Super Bowl, but he hasn't won one.

In theory, that's a huge advantage for the Steelers.

In practice, Roethlisberger's postseason career, much like his current season, has been as disappointing at times as it has been brilliant at others.

There's really no way to know for certain what to expect from Big Ben against the Bolts and beyond, particularly given that he'll be playing for the first time since sustaining a concussion when he plays Sunday against San Diego.

The Steelers would gladly settle for Roethlisberger being as clutch as he was the first time against the Chargers.

Playing with a bad shoulder and from behind with less than seven minutes remaining, Roethlisberger drove the Steelers 73 yards in 13 plays for the game-winning field goal with seconds to play.

It was one of five such rallies orchestrated by Roethlisberger that produced the winning points inside the two-minute warning or in overtime.

Roethlisberger was better than Rivers on Nov. 16 at Heinz Field, but he was worse than Collins on Dec. 21 in Nashville.

That was the day Roethlisberger coughed the ball up four times the Steelers lost two of those fumbles and threw it to the other guys twice.

As good as he was when he needed to be against San Diego, Roethlisberger was that inadequate in Nashville.

That's how you wind up with five comeback wins on your resume during a season in which you throw for 17 touchdowns and 15 interceptions, and finish behind Rivers, Flacco and Collins, among others, in passer rating. Roethlisberger also fumbled an NFL-high 14 times.

Such inconsistency is the stuff that gets you beat in January, as Roethlisberger is well aware.

It was a year ago in January Jan. 5, to be exact that Roethlisberger threw three first-half interceptions in the playoff opener against Jacksonville, and the Steelers headed to their home locker room down, 21-7.

Seemingly through sheer will, Roethlisberger led a second-half assault that brought the Steelers back from a 28-10 deficit and established a 29-28 lead late in the fourth quarter. The lead would have been larger had coach Mike Tomlin not been obsessed with going for two. Alas, it was a game the Steelers lost, 31-29.

The compelling question heading into Sunday is, will the Steelers get the Roethlisberger from the first half of last year's Jacksonville game or the second?

Without question, his regression from the $100 million contract-earning franchise quarterback he was a year ago deserves an asterisk. The respective states of the offensive line and running game have contributed to his downfall.

But it's not as if those two areas will get dramatically better in advance of San Diego.

Once again, Big Ben will have to work around that stuff.

His ability to do so shouldn't be taken for granted as being destined to deliver anticipated playoff salvation.

http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/sports/steelers/s_605941.html

stillers4me
01-07-2009, 09:54 AM
I think most people are amazed that Ben is still standing and leading his team into the playoffs. He's one tough mutha.

TackleMeBen
01-07-2009, 10:15 AM
I think most people are amazed that Ben is still standing and leading his team into the playoffs. He's one tough mutha.
:iagree: he is like that engerizer bunny.. takes a beating and keeps on ticking. :chuckle:

HometownGal
01-07-2009, 10:33 AM
I don't want to hear what Ben has done in the past - the regular season is now behind us. I want to see what he's going to do in this Sunday's game and I have a sneaking suspicion that we just may see the Ben we saw in the 2005 playoffs - confident, making wise choices and even a teenie bit coc ky. :thumbsup:

TackleMeBen
01-07-2009, 10:35 AM
HTG, i agree. i think he will want to prove that he is fine from the injury.

stillers4me
01-07-2009, 10:41 AM
I don't want to hear what Ben has done in the past - the regular season is now behind us. I want to see what he's going to do in this Sunday's game and I have a sneaking suspicion that we just may see the Ben we saw in the 2005 playoffs - confident, making wise choices and even a teenie bit coc ky. :thumbsup:

Like this? :tt03:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v11/sueincinci/Steelers/bigben19ey4tb4ac-1.gif

TackleMeBen
01-07-2009, 11:15 AM
oh it would be so wonderful if we good get that ben back for the game sunday. then we could all sit back and watch rivers with that dumb look on his face and saying to himself(damn i wish i was as good as ben is..lol)

Hines0wnz
01-07-2009, 11:56 AM
HTG, i agree. i think he will want to prove that he is fine from the injury.

That's fine as long as he isnt forcing anything. I dont want to see a repeat of the Raider game from a couple years back. He has the best D in the league to back him up, if something isnt there he better take what they give him and let the D keep Rivers and Sproles in check.

TackleMeBen
01-07-2009, 11:59 AM
That's fine as long as he isnt forcing anything. I dont want to see a repeat of the Raider game from a couple years back. He has the best D in the league to back him up, if something isnt there he better take what they give him and let the D keep Rivers and Sproles in check.
i agree. but you know that he will want to prove to everyone that he is fine. i hope that his ego doesnt get in the way of him making a decision between taking what is there and trying to be superman.

Hines0wnz
01-07-2009, 12:03 PM
i agree. but you know that he will want to prove to everyone that he is fine. i hope that his ego doesnt get in the way of him making a decision between taking what is there and trying to be superman.

That's what I'm afraid of and I know Tomlin likes to let him "be Ben" but if they're down at halftime by 2 TDs because of Ben's INTs then I'm assuming we'll see Leftwich in there for the second half. The benching worked for the Eagles. :thumbsup:

Dino 6 Rings
01-07-2009, 12:06 PM
I don't care if Ben completely blows it and has a horrible game...as long as we as a TEAM win the game, I'm good with it all.

It was our Defense that had the let down on the last drive last season against Jacksonville that allowed them to beat us.

Now we must as a Team Do Better.

If Willie has 5 yards rushing and we win, I'm cool, if Harrison has 0 sacks and 0 tackles and we win, I'm cool, if Taylor misses coverage and blows it, but we win in the end, I'm cool.

Just Win.

Win the Mother Effing Game!

Dino 6 Rings
01-07-2009, 12:07 PM
Special Teams killed us one year, Defense killed us another, turnovers another, lack of turnovers or big plays or big stops, another year...missed catches, bad routes, bad penalties...we need a total Team Effort to win the playoffs. That's the deal.

GBMelBlount
01-07-2009, 12:14 PM
That's what I'm afraid of and I know Tomlin likes to let him "be Ben" but if they're down at halftime by 2 TDs because of Ben's INTs then I'm assuming we'll see Leftwich in there for the second half. The benching worked for the Eagles. :thumbsup:

I hope so. I just remember praying game after game that they'd bring Batch in to give Ben time to fully heal the year we went 8-8......

steel striker
01-07-2009, 08:15 PM
We all know what Ben can do and, I really think he will play great and leads us to our six sb title.

Polamalu Princess
01-07-2009, 09:12 PM
I hope and pray that Ben is well enough to start, however, if we have to have BL start, I am fine with that, as he has been a very steady back-up to Ben.

ts888
01-07-2009, 09:32 PM
they say Ben is all good to go but is anyone else concerned about the report that he had headaches yesterday (Tuesday) while figuring out his helmet was too small due to slightly swollen head?

that CAN'T be a good sign and scares me for his well being.

HometownGal
01-07-2009, 09:34 PM
Like this? :tt03:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v11/sueincinci/Steelers/bigben19ey4tb4ac-1.gif


B I N G O! :drink:

missedgehead
01-07-2009, 10:14 PM
I am hopeful that Ben can help the team win this game. However, these headaches he is having due to the helmet or whatever is concerning though.

markymarc
01-08-2009, 07:20 AM
i agree. but you know that he will want to prove to everyone that he is fine. i hope that his ego doesnt get in the way of him making a decision between taking what is there and trying to be superman.

That is my biggest concern with Ben. No doubt he will want to prove everyone wrong about his concussion. Hopefully he doesn't try to force things to prove that point and takes what the defense gives him. Because I am pretty sure all week he has been hearing about his concussion and turnovers from this season. There is no doubt in my mind though that Ben will lead the Steelers to victory. It may not be pretty but he will get the job done.