Roethlisberger explains turf comment

August, 29, 2012
8/29/12
11:28
AM ET
After watching right guard David DeCastro hurt his knee in Buffalo, Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger blamed the injury on FieldTurf.

There's only one problem: Ralph Wilson Stadium uses A-Turf Titan, not FieldTurf.

Roethlisberger corrected himself on that fact, but he didn't back away from his dislike of artificial surfaces.

"In my postgame interview on Saturday, when asked about the knee injury David DeCastro suffered, I mistakenly referred to the artificial grass in Buffalo as FieldTurf," Roethlisberger said in a statement on his own website. "My intention was only to say I believe real grass is the safest surface for football, and allows some knee injuries to be avoided. I was really bothered by David’s injury in that moment, and can only wish him the best now in his recovery."

Roethlisberger and the Steelers are among 16 NFL teams who play their home games on grass (the Browns, Texans, Jaguars, Chiefs, Dolphins, Raiders, Chargers, Titans, Cardinals, Panthers, Bears, Eagles, 49ers, Buccaneers and Redskins are the others). Two other teams, the Broncos and Packers, use a blend of natural and synthetic called DD Grassmaster. That means 14 teams play on some sort of artificial surface, whether it's FieldTurf, Sportexe Momentum (Ravens), Sportsfield Softtop, UBU Speed Series-S5-M (Bengals) or A-Turf Titan.

In March 2010, an NFL panel found that certain serious knee and ankle injuries happen more often in games played on FieldTurf. An NFL spokesman said at the time that further study was needed before anyone could draw conclusions, and FieldTurf president Eric Daliere argued that the study was flawed.

Jamison Hensley

ESPN Ravens reporter

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