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mesaSteeler
10-09-2009, 12:22 AM
Big Ben tows the line
http://www.timesonline.com/sports/sports_details/article/1424/2009/october/09/big-ben-tows-the-line.html
By: Mike Bires -
Beaver County Times

Friday October 9, 2009 12:15 AM

Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger takes the field between his teammates before an NFL football game against the San Diego Chargers in Pittsburgh, Sunday, Oct. 4, 2009. (AP AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

PITTSBURGH — According to Ben Roethlisberger, he’s one of the NFL’s best quarterbacks because he operates behind one of the league’s best offensive lines.

“I’ll take my five against anybody,” he said.

Roethlisberger has been bragging about his linemen for quite some time now. But he really stepped up his admiration for them this week.

On Monday, Roethlisberger took six of them with him to Wilkes-Barre, Pa., where they appeared on the “WWE Raw” pro wrestling show. When Roethlisberger met with the media for his weekly press briefing on Thursday, he wore a T-shirt emblazoned with images and names of those same six linemen.

When asked about his statistics so far this season — he’s third in the league in passing yards and first in completion percentage — Roethlisberger deflected praise to his front wall of blockers.

“You know, the guys are giving me time,” he said. “I always tell those guys, if they give me time, I’ll deliver the best I can.”

Roethlisberger is getting more time than he did last year when he was sacked 46 times, the second-highest total in the league.

After four games a season ago, Roethlisberger was sacked 16 times, including nine in a loss at Philadelphia. But after four games this year, he’s been taken down 10 times.

“And a couple of those were coverage sacks,” Roethlisberger said.

Chris Kemoeatu, who’s in his second season as the starting left guard, appreciates the way Roethlisberger relates to his linemen.

“Ben’s our dude,” Kemoeatu said. “He’s really close with us guys. He’s a leader for us on and off the field.”
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“Ben does a great job making sure we’re part of everything,” added right guard Trai Essex. “We like the fact our quarterback takes an interest in us. He wants us to be part of his life, and he wants to be part of our lives as well.”

Roethlisberger reportedly did just that in 2007 when he took his entire line on an all-expenses paid trip to Chicago during the Steelers’ bye week.

Why Chicago?

Essex wanted to attend the homecoming game at Northwestern, his alma mater.

Roethlisberger and his linemen had so much fun in Chicago two years ago that they returned last year when they had the weekend off after a Nov. 20 Thursday night game. This time, they went to celebrate the birthday of center Justin Hartwig.

And who could forget what Roethlisberger said moments after the Steelers won Super Bowl XLIII?

As he was being interviewed by sportscaster Dan Patrick, Roethlisberger held up the Lombardi Trophy and yelled, “Offensive line … who’s laughing now, O-line?”

It was Roethlisberger’s way of praising the offensive line after it was criticized by the media and fans much of the season.

“We don’t want to be considered the weak link of the offense,” right tackle Willie Colon said. “Nobody is in this business to be OK. We all want to be great. We all want to be considered a great offensive line.”

Roethlisberger already says so.

mulldog24
10-09-2009, 10:08 AM
Nice post Mesa! I think it is just another example of how Ben has taken this team over. Ben never complains about sacks and is quick to give credit to the team or other members of the team, Ben is a true leader IMHO.

billybob
10-09-2009, 10:08 AM
Sounds like Big Ben and i have been on the same page now ,for a while . I think those 5 guys are ready to turn some heads . They are doing nothing , but getting better every game .

:tt02: :tt02: :tt02: :tt02: :tt02: :tt02: :tt02:

Slick93
10-09-2009, 12:01 PM
Great post mesa...Love seeing Ben giving praise where praise is due. The more I read about him the more I realize what a great leader he is for this team, let's hope it stays that way for years to come.

vasteeler
10-09-2009, 12:09 PM
GOD I LOVE THIS TEAM:tt04::tt::tt02::tt03:

austinfrench76
10-09-2009, 12:50 PM
The O Line has not been the issue this year! They have been awesome!

fat4jc
10-09-2009, 01:06 PM
GOD I LOVE THIS TEAM:tt04::tt::tt02::tt03:

Fortunately there's alot of love to go around. I love this team too. Ben has really shown himself more of a leader than any other NFL QB.

Vincent
10-09-2009, 10:07 PM
Contrast Ben to manning after we rolled them in the 05 playoffs...

The Steelers’ blitz that often wrecked Manning’s passing game? "I’m trying to be a good teammate here. Let’s just say we had some problems with protection." "Pittsburgh came in here and played better than us. It’s hard to admit that, it’s hard to accept that. But unfortunately, that’s the truth." [Associated Press]

What a weenie. :rofl:

http://www.oddjack.com/2006/super-bowl-excuse-manning-blames-colts-protection-problems-01-15.php

stairway27
10-09-2009, 10:21 PM
I watched RAW Monday, something I haven't done since high school. Ben was great. The O line looked like they were in heaven. I think they really enjoyed that. They were put in the spotlight. You'd never see Manning or Brady do that for their guys.

sharkweek
10-09-2009, 10:42 PM
The O Line has not been the issue this year! They have been awesome!

they've been awesome in the pass blocking, but the run blocking wasn't that great the first two games...granted, the play calling didn't help either but both aspects have steadily improved, can't wait to see the amount of sh!t they can wreck against the Lions and Brownies.

markymarc
10-10-2009, 03:41 PM
Nice read and thanks for posting it Mesa. The OL has really stepped up this year so far. It's great to see them performing so well.