Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Big Ben again pledges loyalty to Steelers
By Scott Brown
PITTSBURGH -- The Pittsburgh Steelers’ use of the shotgun against the Lions, his mastery of the Browns and getting rid of the ball quicker were all topics that Ben Roethlisberger addressed during his weekly media chat.
His future in Pittsburgh also came up late Wednesday afternoon, and Roethlisberger can’t seem to sidestep questions about it as easily as he does opposing pass-rushers.
The NFL Network has stood behind reports that the 10-year veteran might ask the Steelers to explore trading him after the season. Roethlisberger has said he wants to play his entire career in Pittsburgh, and he was asked Wednesday if he would consider giving the Steelers a hometown discount when he signs his next contract.
“I will do whatever it takes to stay here and be a part of this team and help this team win,” Roethlisberger said. “That’s something that can be discussed when the time comes. It’s not really my thing. I play football. I have people to deal with all that stuff.”
Roethlisberger will have two years left on his contract after this season. He and the Steelers agreed to an eight-year, $102 million contract in 2008 when there were still two years left on his rookie pact.
The two sides are likely to open contract negotiations after this season.
“I love being in Pittsburgh, I am extremely happy,” Roethlisberger said. “[Jerricho Cotchery] asked me today what the new rumor was this week. We’re always excited to see what [the NFL Network] is going to make up this week.”
The hot topic around the Steelers this week has been the no-huddle offense and how much they will use it after having such success with it in a 37-27 win over the Lions. Roethlisberger echoed sentiments that coach Mike Tomlin expressed earlier this week when he said that the Steelers have to be careful with how much they use it.
“It can be tricky to do too much of it,” Roethlisberger said. “We have a lot of calls, but certain things look good and you call them a couple of times. Even late in the game I called a run play and they sniffed it out. They started yelling, ‘Watch the run over here.’”
Roethlisberger said one of the biggest reasons for his success in throwing for 367 yards and four touchdowns against the Lions was his emphasis on getting the ball out of his hand sooner. The Lions sacked Roethlisberger just one time because of that approach.
“We called some screens, some quick passes, because we saw that some of their coverage was a little soft,” Roethlisberger said, “and they gave up some underneath passes, some flats. It worked out for us. I feel like we moved the ball.”