This Former Steeler Thinks Ben Roethlisberger Should Retire | Sports Takes & News | TooAthletic.com
A former NFL player and teammate of Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger says that Pittsburgh should say goodbye to Big Ben and let the aging star retire this offseason. This player is completely convinced Roethlisberger should retire, and even offered up a compelling reason. Do you agree with him, or do you feel it should be full steam ahead for Big Ben in Pittsburgh in 2021?
Ike Taylor was a cornerback for the Steelers before the franchise drafted Ben Roethlisberger with the two players being teammates until 2014 when Taylor left Pittsburgh. This past week during an interview, Taylor was asked if it was time for his former quarterback to step aside and leave the Steelers, to which he said, “100 percent,” and offered up the QB’s lack of mobility as the reason.
While admitting that Big Ben has done a lot for the franchise and has nothing left to prove, Taylor explained that Roethlisberger, who played at age 38 last season, is no longer mobile enough in the pocket to avoid the blitz and create more time for broken plays to be saved, a trademark throughout most of his days in Pittsburgh. As a result, Taylor feels it is time for Roethlisberger to retire.
Many people said late last season the Roethlisberger was dealing with knee problems that cut down his mobility and forced the quarterback to work almost exclusively from the shotgun formation, taking away Pittsburgh’s ability to run play-action pass plays and making it easier for defenses to know what was coming. The knee issues coincided with the Steelers going from an unbeatable team to one that lost five of their last six games, including a Wild-Card game to the Browns.
With Roethlisberger currently projected to be a $41 Million cap hit for the Steelers in 2021, the team likely needs him to come back and play next season, even after the player and franchise agreed to rework his current contract. So, despite the pleas from Ike Taylor to retire this offseason, fans in Pittsburgh should expect to see Big Ben calling plays for at least one more year this fall.
Taylor’s point is valid, however, since, at 39, the days of shedding tacklers in the pocket and open field to pick up a first down by running or throw deep on a broken play are over in Pittsburgh, at least with Roethlisberger at quarterback.
Sadly, however, Taylor may also be hoping for Big Ben to step away from the NFL one year too early rather than wait until it’s one season too late. I say that since I believe Pittsburgh might have seen the last good season from Roethlisberger that they will get in 2020, with 2021 and beyond seeing a huge decline in his play as his age and physical style of play finally catch up with him.
In the end, with the emergence of Baltimore and Cleveland, the Steelers, at best, might be the third best team in the AFC North next season, forcing them into the longer Wild-Card route to the Super Bowl. Which is a road that Big Ben may no longer be able to travel for the rest of his career, meaning the team is not likely to be a title contender with Ben Roethlisberger as their quarterback ever again.
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This Former Steeler Thinks Ben Roethlisberger Should Retire | TooAthletic.com
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