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Old 03-02-2009, 04:54 PM   #1
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Default #7...Canton Bound?

Sunday, March 01, 2009
By Gene Collier, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
===============================
Just so I don't have to worry about it in, say, the year 2025, I'm trying to get Ben Roethlisberger into the Hall of Fame right now, or by noon tomorrow at the latest.

Look, I've got things to do.

Ben will be 27 TODAY, and, maybe you've heard, he already has won two Super Bowl titles. None of the 23 modern-era quarterbacks in the Pro Football Hall of Fame who won at least two Super Bowl crowns did it by age 27, not even Bryan Bartlett Starr, who won the first two.

Starr won three NFL championships with the Green Bay Packers prior to the invention of the Super Bowl, but none before turning 27.

So that ought to pretty much do it. Thank you very much. See you in Canton, Ohio, sometime in the '20s.

Dissent?

It's too soon for this discussion?

Please, this is the culture where too soon means just perfect.

Aren't high school sophomores committing to collegiate basketball powers, and aren't 9-year-old shortstops dispatched to traveling teams, and didn't Sports Illustrated swimsuit cover girl Bar Refaeli tell David Letterman she's been modeling since she was 5, and is it too soon to get a $300,000 mortgage just because you don't have $3,000 in assets, and don't we get sorely ticked off if the microwave lasagna takes three minutes?

Three minutes?

Look, I've got things to do.

We started this week comparing Pedro Alvarez to Willie Stargell.

Too soon? No, just perfect.

That's like saying it's too soon for Octuplets Mom to try for nine at a time. Perhaps they'll make it out of the incubators before someone compares them to the 1927 Yankees.

OK we weren't comparing Alvarez to Stargell statistically, because that would look like this: Stargell: 475 career homers, 1,540 career RBIs.

Alvarez: 0 career homers, 0 career RBIs.

We were comparing their swings. Partly due to a comment by Manny Sanguillen, whose barbecue stand remains the best-smelling thing at PNC Park on any level, if you're with me, and partly because both swings were from the left side and included some kind of windmill pre-launch action.

Oh well, that's different, I mean if their swings are vaguely similar.

When I was 11, some village nutball told my Little League coach I had a swing like Ted Williams'.

Let's go to the stats on that one, shall we?

Teddy Ballgame: 521 career homers, 1,839 career RBI's.

Collier: See Alvarez, above.

But this is getting us nowhere. Last I checked, Ben was still not in the Hall of Fame. An outrage.

Let's go back to the Super Bowl (like anyone has to be coaxed), into the ancient texts of one month ago today, and look at what No. 7 did.

This is the only necessary context, indeed the only relevant context, because Roethlisberger can't rightly be compared to post-modern quarterbacks who played 6, 8, 10, 15 years.

Ben can't compare to Dan Marino, who has more records than the museum of broadcasting, but it's in no way irrelevant that Marino's Super Bowl victories match Jim Kelly's, that both totals added together are one fewer than Joe Namath's, who has exactly half of Roethlisberger's two. Marino and Kelly and Namath are in the Hall of Fame.

They've played XLIII Super Bowls since 1966, but in only three did a quarterback lead his team down the field to a winning touchdown in the final minute, a touchdown on a pass that left that quarterback's hand with his team behind. You can compare those, but the only way to compare three perfect passes is by margin of error.

Eli Manning hit Plaxico Burress with 35 seconds left and the New York Giants down, 14-10, to the New England Patriots. Burress was open in the end zone, and Manning's arc was perfect, but there was some discernible margin for error. Joe Montana hit John Taylor with 34 seconds left, and the San Francisco 49ers down, 16-13, to the Cincinnati Bengals, a quick slant to his left, a perfect arrow, with perhaps a 5 percent margin for error because Taylor had a step on Cincinnati's coverage. Ben hit Santonio Holmes with 35 seconds left and the Steelers down, 23-20. But that's where the comparison breaks down.

Holmes was triple-covered. There was no margin for error. So, in the more recent case, No. 7 not only won the Super Bowl, hewonthe Super Bowl. Bryant McFadden won the Super Bowl, but Roethlisbergerwonthe Super Bowl.

I can't make it any clearer than that.

There are three Hall of Fame quarterbacks with more Super Bowl victories than Roethlisberger: Montana, Terry Bradshaw and Troy Aikman. There are 16 with fewer. In the Hall of Fame. C'mon; Ben's in, right?

Next case.

Tom Brady?

Hmm. More Super Bowl wins than Roethlisberger two Super Bowl wins before he was 27 (actually 54 days younger than Roethlisberger), and quicker than Roethlisberger to marry a supermodel.

Calling Canton. We've all got things to do.

Gene Collier can be reached at gcollier@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1283. More articles by this author
First published on March 1, 2009 at 12:00 am
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Old 03-02-2009, 05:12 PM   #2
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Default Re: #7...Canton Bound?

Most people won't give Ben a second look because he doesn't put up the "stats" that people wanna see. Stats are not everything, people! Leading your team on a game-winning touchdown drive with seconds left in the game is the kind of stuff people should be looking at!

Ben Roethlisberger... Hall of Fame Class of 20??. Sounds right to me.
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Old 03-02-2009, 05:13 PM   #3
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Default Re: #7...Canton Bound?

Quote:
Originally Posted by NEPAsteeler View Post
Most people won't give Ben a second look because he doesn't put up the "stats" that people wanna see. Stats are not everything, people! Leading your team on a game-winning touchdown drive with seconds left in the game is the kind of stuff people should be looking at!

Ben Roethlisberger... Hall of Fame Class of 20??. Sounds right to me.
one more Super Bowl under his belt...he's in for sure.
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Old 03-02-2009, 05:14 PM   #4
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Default Re: #7...Canton Bound?

Already posted.

http://forums.steelersfever.com/showthread.php?t=34259
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