Roethlisberger accepts pressure
Thursday, September 01, 2005
By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Bill Cowher pulled quarterback Ben Roethlisberger aside the past week and had a talk with him about pressure, and not the kind he has in the tires on his Harley.
"I just make sure that every time he throws an incompletion or he misses a read that people don't overreact,'' Cowher said.
"He is going to be held to a very high standard," he said, adding that he tells Roethlisberger: "Don't put any undue pressure on yourself. Just continue to grow as a quarterback, grow as a player.''
Roethlisberger carries a 30.0 passer rating into the final preseason game tonight against the Carolina Panthers in Charlotte, N.C., and has not produced a touchdown in three preseason games. Pressure, he said, is not necessarily a bad thing.
"I put pressure on myself because I want to be the best. I get disappointed with myself when we don't score and when I don't complete passes. On the flip side of the coin, I look at it like I feel much better about myself, where this offense is and where I am in the offense.
"I really feel that I'm disappointed I'm not playing as good as I could, but I feel I'm coming along pretty good and I think this offense is going to be coming along with me."
Teammates say Roethlisberger is not ignoring the obvious, that he and the offense have improved this summer.
"We're just on the edge of exploding,'' receiver Cedrick Wilson said. "We're leaving a lot of plays out there on the football field, a lot of them, and, if we make those plays, you'll be talking about how we're overachieving right now. We're just one play away from opening this thing up, and I hope that it happens."
Hines Ward, who has played briefly in just two games, said they don't want to be at their best right now anyway.
"Yes, we have to get better, but we don't need to be clicking on all four cylinders right now. We don't want to max out. It's a learning curve. We're all getting better and we're getting a feel for one another and I think we'll jell with one another."
Said Roethlisberger, "The thing that's most important for us is that we score against Tennessee [in the season opener]."