Does Ben Roethlisberger Want Traded?

 Posted by at 8:22 am  Art Rooney II, Big Ben, Todd Haley  Comments Off on Does Ben Roethlisberger Want Traded?
Nov 112013
 

 

On the NFL’s Sunday morning pre-game show, so-called “insider” Ian Rapoport reported on the above posted tweet. Who is Ian Rapoport? I have no idea. He’s certainly never broken any notable scoops like ESPN or Fox NFL “insiders.” Whoever he is, he certainly did his job by “breaking” a story that even got ongoing updates from the crew covering the Bills-Steelers game.

Before we go into the analysis and denials, we should start with Rapoport’s tweet. He’d later whine he was being misquoted or that the Pittsburgh Steelers were denying things he never said. Rapoport’s scoop actually is two scoops in one. First, he alleges Ben Roethlisberger is going to ask to be traded this off-season. Secondly, he alleges the Steelers already contemplated parting ways with Ben by soliciting trade offers last spring. Continue reading »

Aug 302013
 

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Last season, the Pittsburgh Steelers rested almost half their starters during the team’s final preseason game. Mike Tomlin made the mistake of announcing this beforehand and fans reacted accordingly. I’m sure he got a stern talking to because when you make it obvious that a game doesn’t matter, people don’t watch and more importantly they don’t show up to pay overpriced parking or buy watered down beer. So this year, Coach T kept his intentions to himself.

Not that anything different happened. Last night, the Steelers played their fourth and final preseason game. And last night, Ben Roethlisberger, Troy Polamalu, Ryan Clark, Ike Taylor, LaMarr Woodley, Brett Keisel, Antonio Brown, Emmanuel Sanders, and even backup quarterback Bruce Gradkowski all didn’t dress.

It was Scrub-a-poloza in Carolina last night as the Black and Gold went 0-fer the preseason, falling to the Panthers 25-10. Thus concludes Pittsburgh’s first winless preseason since Bill Cowher’s final season back in 2006 and only their third in nearly 50 years. Again, the worst team ever, the 0-16 Detroit Lions, went undefeated that preseason so these games are hardly an accurate predictor of the season to come. Still, it doesn’t exactly instill one with a great deal of confidence coming off a miserable 8-8 campaign.

So, what’s Tomlin’s assessment of his team pulling a Detroit this preseason? Continue reading »

Steelers Second Preseason Game Worse Than The First

 Posted by at 5:50 am  Offensive Line, Preseason, Running Backs, Wide Receivers  Comments Off on Steelers Second Preseason Game Worse Than The First
Aug 202013
 

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Keep repeating: “It’s only the preseason. It’s only the preseason.”

The Pittsburgh Steelers played their second preseason game last night, losing to the Washington Redskins 24-13. The final score isn’t as important as how the team performed. In their first preseason game, the Black and Gold looked sloppy and undisciplined. If nothing else, I was hoping to see the team’s level of play improve across the board.

Talk about one step forward, two steps back. Where to begin with last night’s debacle? Continue reading »

Thoughts On Steelers First Preseason Game

 Posted by at 5:31 am  Offensive Line, Preseason, Running Backs, Special Teams, Tight Ends, Wide Receivers  Comments Off on Thoughts On Steelers First Preseason Game
Aug 122013
 

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The Pittsburgh Steelers fell to the New York Giants 18-13 in Saturday night’s preseason debut. I note the score because I love being on Twitter during these meaningless games and watching Steeler Nation freak out over such minute details. I guess such passion even for games featuring a bunch of guys who’ll be selling car insurance two weeks from now goes hand in hand with having the best fan base in all of football. Remember, people, the Detroit Lions went undefeated in the preseason before taking an O-fer the entire regular season.

With that in mind, there were some interesting storylines coming out of the game: Continue reading »

Jun 142013
 

 

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Oops, wrong Landry. Landry Clarke plays kicker slash tight end. Otherwise known as “the position Tim Tebow will play after Bill Belichick sees him in practice.” Our Landry is definitely a quarterback.

The Pittsburgh Steelers reached a deal with their final unsigned 2013 draft choice, agreeing to a four year contract with former University of Oklahoma quarterback Landry Jones. Terms of the deal weren’t available but under the NFL’s blessedly streamlined rookie wage scale, his contract will almost assuredly total somewhere around $2.5 million (about $650,000 per year) with some sort of signing bonus and playing incentives thrown in.

Despite the Steelers signing all their picks in relatively short order, it was imperative they get Jones into camp as soon as possible. Granted this year is going to be a better year than most for all the Black and Gold rookies to make an immediate impact. LB Jarvis Jones and RB Le’Veon Bell are likely to see significant playing time while guys like WR Marcus Wheaton and S Shamarko Thomas will be the first guys off the bench when injuries invariably strike. However, none of those positions require the level of study and preparation as playing quarterback.

Yes, Bruce Gradkowski is back home in the ‘Burgh. And, yes, he’s proven a pretty durable player over his NFL career. Regardless, if there is one position (besides offensive line) where the team has been snakebit over the years, it’s quarterback. If the team makes it through the preseason with all three QBs healthy and ready to go, it’ll be a refreshing change.

Ben Roethlisberger is a tough dude without a doubt. He’s also north of 30 and can’t take the punishment he used to. He’s missed games in every one of the past several seasons and considering he’s already having “minor” surgery during the OTAs, there’s no reason not to think he won’t miss a game or two in 2013. I’ve always liked Gradkowski but should he get hurt or prove ineffective, it would be nice to have a capable #3 ready to step forward.

Starting a rookie QB is less than ideal and I’m definitely not ready to declare Jones is Ben’s heir apparent, I’m simply relieved the team will have some capable options if/when Ben has to sit out. Byron Leftwich was useless and Dennis Dixon never learned more than five plays in four years. While I loves me some Charlie Batch, his career met a fitting end in the season-highlight victory over the Ravens. Bring on the new blood.

I can’t believe I’m saying this but I may actually be looking forward to watching preseason games this year.