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Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Grading Ben Roethlisberger

By James Walker

Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is back. But is he all the way back? Not quite.

The AFC North blog covered Roethlisberger's 2010 debut Sunday against the Cleveland Browns and later broke down the game film of every throw to grade his performance. It's a new feature that we will do periodically in the blog.

Points are awarded or deducted on a five-point scale, depending on how Roethlisberger performed each play. Here is what we found:

Roethlisberger
Ben Roethlisberger was 16-for-27 with 3 TDs and one pick in his 2010 debut.
Roethlisberger's first drive
Grade for drive: -3 points

Second drive
Grade for drive: +11 points

Third drive
Grade for drive: -2 points

Fourth drive
Grade for drive: +3 points

Fifth drive
Grade for drive: +12 points

Sixth drive
Grade for drive: +2 points

Seventh drive
Grade for drive: -4 points

Eighth drive
Grade for drive: +1 point

Ninth drive
Grade for drive: -1 point

Tenth drive
Grade for drive: +3 points

Roethlisberger's game grade: +22 points

AFC North blog's analysis: This was a great starting point to build on for Roethlisberger, who had not played in a meaningful game since January. As you can see above, there were some vintage plays but also several missed throws that Roethlisberger will probably make once he gets back in midseason form. I've covered plenty of Roethlisberger's starts over the past three seasons, and this was more of a B-level performance by his standards. When Roethlisberger gets back on his "A" game, the Steelers will be very tough to beat.