Tag:Ben Roethlisberger
Posted on: December 6, 2010 4:16 am
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Posted on: December 5, 2010 9:03 pm
Edited on: December 6, 2010 12:15 am

Steelers, Ravens come down with injuries

B. Roethlisberger took a shot to the nose on the first Pittsburgh series. Posted by Josh Katzowitz

The first series for the Ravens and Steelers offenses did not end well for either team.

On the final play for Pittsburgh, Baltimore NT Haloti Ngata sacked QB Ben Roethlisberger, but while doing so, his left hand made contact with Roethlisberger’s facemask (no penalty was called).

By time Roethlisberger made it back to his feet, blood poured from his nose, and his appendage looked more crooked than we remember it (for a look at the new schnozz, click here) .

On the next series, though, Roethlisberger – who’s also playing with a bad foot – returned to the field.

For the Ravens, the first offensive play of the game was a disaster. As TE Todd Heap ran a fly route, he sustained a hamstring injury. He immediately limped to the sidelines, and according to reports, Heap is out for the game.

Photo at right courtesy of thedutchmaster3 .

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Posted on: December 3, 2010 3:23 pm

Five questions (or more) with Brian St. Pierre

B. St. Pierre was a stay-at home dad one week and a starting NFL quarterback the next (US Presswire). Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Last month, Brian St. Pierre was just minding his business at home, contemplating the end of his seven-year NFL career and taking care of his 20-month-old son. He was a stay-at home dad, and he was beginning to come to terms with that while thinking about the next step in his life.

He had played for the Steelers, Ravens and Cardinals, and in his career, he had only made five passing attempts. But he got a call from the Panthers, saying they needed a quarterback. A few days later, after Jimmy Clausen sustained a concussion vs. the Buccaneers, coach John Fox named St. Pierre the starting quarterback. Considering St. Pierre had been in town less than a week, this was, to say the least, a surprising move. 

This week, we talked to St. Pierre about his career, his job as a father and how surprised he was to get the call to start the game against the Ravens (he went 13 of 28 for 173 yards, a touchdown and two interceptions in the Panthers loss) and actually played well enough to keep Carolina in the game (the Panthers cut the lead to 20-13 early in the fourth quarter before falling 37-13).

Previous Five Questions (or More):

Nov. 19:
Former coach/author Mike Gottfried

Nov. 12: 49ers LB Takeo Spikes

Nov. 5: former WR, current NFL analyst Keyshawn Johnson

Oct. 29: Chargers LS Mike Windt

Oct. 22: Bengals WR coach Mike Sheppard

Oct. 15: Redskins WR Anthony Armstrong

Oct. 8:
Patriots LB Rob Ninkovich

Oct. 1: Kent Babb of the KC Star

Sept. 24: Texans WR Kevin Walter

Sept. 17: former Bengals, Titans DT John Thornton

Sept. 11: Seahawks RB Leon Washington

1. CBSSports.com: It must be a crazy time for you. A couple weeks ago, you were a stay-at home dad, and now you’re in the NFL. Just walk me through the last couple weeks.

Brian St. Pierre: I was at home with my wife and my son and living day to day and just loving being around him. I had played seven years in the league and I wasn’t in a rush to do anything. But I got a call from Carolina, and I was thinking about whether I wanted to do it or not. It all happened quickly.

CBS: I think the entire world was surprised when John Fox named you the starter, especially because you were so new to the team and because Tony Pike had been there all year. Were you surprised?

St. Pierre:
It surprised me in that Tony knew the offense. Me, I had been here two or three days. I practiced on Friday and they kind of told me to get up to speed as quick as possible for the next week, not knowing Jimmy was going to get a concussion. Once that happened, everything went quickly. I was putting in 14 hours a day. Then, I was told on Wednesday morning of that week that I was going to start.

CBS: And you were starting against Baltimore. I mean, really? Couldn’t they have started you against a team that doesn’t have one of the best defenses in the league?

St. Pierre: First of all, you’re starting after a couple days of being with the team, and by the way, you’re playing Baltimore. I didn’t really have time to process it. I was just trying to get my head above water. I wanted just to give us a chance to win. I didn’t want to embarrass myself. I obviously have confidence in myself as a player, but this offense is completely new to me.

2. CBS: How hard is it to learn a completely new offense that quickly? If you had been on the team before and they had re-signed you, it would have been easier. But to learn a completely new playbook …?

St. Pierre: It’s really hard to equate it to anything in real life. It would be like apple meaning orange to you. Everybody runs similar type plays, but they’re called completely differently and they have different terminology. It was breaking old habits and learning new habits, all in a five- or six-day span.

CBS: How do you think the start went? I don’t think anybody could have expected much from you, but you kept the team in the game.

St. Pierre: There are always plays you wish you had back. But given the circumstances and the situation I was put in, I still felt like we could win the game because I always feel like that. I made a couple plays late in the game that hurt us with a couple interceptions, but in that situation, when we’re down 10 and at third and long, you’re just jamming the ball in there. Until the end, I felt like I gave us a chance to win against a really good team. I felt like I held my own. I definitely didn’t feel like I embarrassed myself. I gave us a chance to win, so I can get some satisfaction in that.

3. CBS:
When you were sitting at home, did you think your career might be over?

St. Pierre:
I had played seven years. The last time I was involved was last year in the playoffs with Arizona when we played New Orleans. That was my last NFL experience until now. I had a back injury with Arizona, and they weren’t sure I could hold up with my back. They didn’t commit to me one way or the other. If somebody called, I knew I’d love the chance to play again. But if not, I could move on and start the next chapter of my life. But I still stayed in shape, because until you’re done completely, you need to be a professional and stay in shape. When the call comes, it helps to be ready.

4. CBS:
When you weren’t playing football and you were staying at home with your son, you must have felt pretty lucky. There aren’t a whole lot of dads who stay at home with their kids and get to watch them grow every day.

St. Pierre:
It’s been so fun for me to be around him every day and to get to experience the little things – the little changes in him and how they grow. Mothers usually get more of that than the fathers do. I grew up and didn’t see my dad home that much. He’s an orthopedic surgeon and he was gone all the time. If I was upset, I would always go to my mom. I love my dad, but I didn’t see him as much. But with my son, I got to spend so much time with him that he would come to me as regularly as he went to his mother. It makes it all the more special. I wouldn’t trade any of that time I got to spend with him.

There were days when I put him down for a nap, and I’m just sitting there thinking how did my life go from what I did to what I’m doing now. All the good parts about it you love, but I’m used to being in the middle of action and playing NFL football. Now, I’m changing diapers and putting him down for a nap and not really having much to do. What a contrast. In all honesty, I loved being around him. It’s hard for me because I’m not around him at all now. I’ve seen him once in the past three weeks. You always want to be around him.

But at the same time, when you’re sitting at home, your career is in flux and you’re pretty much unemployed.

St. Pierre:
I just kind of took it as fortunate I got to play seven years in the NFL, and financially, I’m secure for now. But at the same time, we have Bills to pay and we don’t have money coming in. I kind of had a plan in place for what I wanted to do after football, but I thought, ‘Let me get through this season. I can get working on some of the plans but I’ll work out in case somebody calls and they need a quarterback.’ It kind of worked out the way I thought it could.

Since I came in the league, I haven’t had anything given to me. I have had to work my butt off for anything I’ve gotten, which wasn’t much of anything. I was always on teams with really good quarterbacks. (Ben) Roethlisberger in Pittsburgh, (Kurt) Warner in Arizona and the year I was in Baltimore, we had Steve McNair. Everywhere I was, there was also a first-round pick on the depth chart, so your chances to get in a game are not happening. I fought my butt off to stay in the league and I showed my worth. But this year, I thought, ‘Maybe this is the end.’

5. CBS:
But now that you’ve actually started a game in the NFL, would that provide a little bit of closure if you're done after this seasno?

St. Pierre: Once I got that start the other day, it makes you want to play more. Even though we didn’t win and it didn’t go as great as you would hope, it was fun. It felt like I had never stopped doing it from college. When you’re the guy out there, it’s just a great feeling. It’s why I play quarterback. Once I got that taste, you kind of want it more. If it ends, at least I got to start and prove to people I can play in this league. I know I put my best foot forward.

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Posted on: December 3, 2010 10:02 am

Hot Routes 12.03.10: Is DeSean wary?

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

- Perhaps, DeSean Jackson would like to call the plays for the Eagles, as well. That’s a bit of a stretch but perhaps not too far out of the question. According to ESPN’s Sal Palantonio, via Pro Football Talk, Jackson and his representatives would like him to run less shallow crossing routes. Apparently, he’s concerned about concussions and how that would hurt his marketability for his next contract (because, then, he’d be liable to take a big hit from a linebacker or a safety). The NFL Network asked Jackson about this after the Thursday night game, and Jackson didn’t really give much credence to the report.

- So, Ben Roethlisberger actually has a broken foot, not a sprained one like the Steelers had been saying. Doesn’t matter. He’s still going to play this weekend, and apparently, it shouldn’t affect anything he would normally do on the field. It probably won’t feel real good, though.

- Remember that $150,000 UFL transfer fee that prevented a number of players from signing with NFL teams? Yeah, now it’s a $25,000 fee. Much more palatable, I’m sure, to NFL GMs and owners.

- Bengals fans want offensive coordinator Bob Bratkowski’s head on a platter (actually, this has been their wish for the past several years). Here’s how Bratkowski responded to their bloodlust.

- Panthers CB Chris Gamble talked to reporters about why he missed practice last week, causing him to miss a start. Apparently, he made some kind of “out of mind decision.”

Well, what do you know? The Chargers special teams have begun to play better (not that they could have played much worse). That’s one reason why San Diego is streaking.

Jets kicker Nick Folk knows he’s on shaky ground, especially after the club brought in Kris Brown for a tryout Tuesday. Not surprisingly, Folk had a good day of practice Thursday.

Dolphins WR Brian Hartline has drawn five pass interference penalties from opposing defenses this year. The rest of the Miami receiving corps combined? Zero.

The Broncos said their memories of Kenny McKinley won’t be clouded by the recent revelations of his gambling problems.

Three Minnesota counties
have been wooing the Vikings to build a new stadium so the organization can remain in-state.

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Posted on: December 2, 2010 4:24 pm

Key Matchup Week 13: Roethlisberger vs. Ravens

Posted by Andy Benoit

We never hear this about Ben Roethlisberger, but he’s one of those guys who can be described as a “better athlete than quarterback”. From a pure fundamental standpoint, Roethlisberger is not a very good NFL quarterback. His footwork on dropbacks can sometimes be iffy. His pocket mechanics are occasionally slipshod, in part because his pocket awareness is raw. Roethlisberger does not read the field well before the snap. In fact, some scouts suspect that he occasionally does not reB. Roethlisberger (US Presswire)ally read the field at all.

And yet, it’s plain to see that Big Ben is one of the best players in football. A two-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback capable of posting big numbers and leading heroic late-game drives. There might not be a more feared player in the game on third-and-long.

So how is Roethlisberger, given his unrefined fundamentals and awareness, a superstar? For one, he’s a remarkable athlete. No need to elaborate – we’ve all seen plays where the 6’5”, 240-pounder bounces off multiple would-be sackers, flees the pocket, sidesteps another sacker, returns to the pocket and unwinds a side-armed bull’s-eye while falling to the ground. That’s natural talent at its finest.

What’s more, Roethlisberger is instinctive beyond belief. While most quarterbacks thrive on diagnosing and anticipating what a defense will do, Roethlisberger would rather wait, see and react. When he does this, he’s relying on his instincts rather than his intelligence. He’s the only quarterback in football who can consistently operate this way.

This wait, see and react approach is the reason Roethlisberger holds the ball so long. And it’s the reason he is so difficult to gameplan against. Normally, the Ravens, with their aggressive, complex 3-4 scheme, overwhelm a quarterback who has limited field recognition. That comes from Ed Reed. With his range and uncanny football IQ, Reed disguises coverages better than any player in the game.
But disguised coverages don’t always work against the Steelers because Roethlisberger does not follow the fundamental chain of reads that quarterbacks are taught to follow. Think of it like telling a lie to someone who speaks a foreign language: your lie might be crafty and well delivered, but it won’t matter because your recipient is oblivious to everything you’re saying anyway.

In the end, Roethlisberger’s frenetic style forces defenses to be reactionary. Certain defenses – like the Colts, for example – can get by on being reactionary. But the Ravens, with their thin secondary (backup corners Chris Carr and Josh Wilson are simply fill-in starters) and dependence on presnap confusion and blitzes, cannot.

Thus, it’s important the Ravens get the type of pass-rush pressure on Roethlisberger that forces him to make quick decisions. It’s not enough to simply blitz and hit him – he’ll just extend the play and work his magic. The key is getting clean rushers at him. And the way to do that is to confuse Pittsburgh’s makeshift offensive line.

Expect the Ravens to use overload blitzes and zone exchange concepts that will force the Steeler blockers to make fast reads and be athletes (neither of which they’re particularly good at). Look for the Ravens to crowd the line of scrimmage with more players than the Steelers can block prior to the snap. Upon the snap, Baltimore will create chaos with an unpredictable array of stunts, drop backs or all-out rushes after the snap. They’ll avoid doing the same thing two plays in a row. The more confused the Steeler blockers are, the quicker Roethlisberger will be forced to get rid of the ball. The quicker he gets rid of the ball, the easier it will be for Baltimore’s front seven to dictate the action.

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Posted on: December 2, 2010 8:43 am
Edited on: December 2, 2010 12:05 pm

Roethlisberger will play Sunday night

Posted by Andy Benoit

Despite spending part of the week in a walking boot, Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger will play Sunday night against the Ravens. Roethlisberger’s injured foot only cost him a small snippet of practice time.

“I fight through a lot of things,” he told the Beaver County Times’ Mike Bires. “I’ll find a way to make it happen. There’s no doubt in my mind.”

Safety Troy Polamalu has missed practice this week with an Achilles strain. That was the case last week, as well. Then Polamalu went out and had arguably his best game of the season against the Bills. Expect the superstar safety to be full go Sunday night.

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Posted on: November 29, 2010 9:46 am
Edited on: November 29, 2010 1:41 pm

Key players slated for medical tests Monday

Posted by Andy Benoit

Two superstars coming off Week 12 victories will undergo important tests to their lower extremities Monday. Vikings running back Adrian Peterson will have an MRI on his injured right ankle. Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger will have his right foot examined.

Peterson got his ankle caught in a pile in the first half at Washington. He went through several tape jobs and was chomping at the bit to go back in the game but ultimately remained on the sidelines while Toby Gerhardt handled the running game.

Roethlisberger got his right foot caught in the ground and his knee rolled late against the Bills. He finished the game and was talking about the injury afterwards, so it’s almost unimaginable that it’s anything serious.

UPDATE: Though Peterson described his ankle pain as "unbearable", NBC Sports says the running back is expected to be available when the Vikings face the Bills next week.

UPDATE II (1:40 p.m. ET): Leslie Frazier says Peterson has a sprain. The team will know more later in the week.

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Posted on: November 24, 2010 9:36 am
Edited on: November 24, 2010 1:36 pm

Terrell Owens calls Roethlisberger 'soft'

Posted by Will Brinson

We're getting close to an epic Bengals meltdown, folks. How do I know? Well, simple really -- losing coupled with unhappy wide receiver divas almost always results in a blowup.

Especially if Terrell Owens is involved. And he is -- less than 24 hours after calling Darrelle Revis "average," Owens mocked another opponent on The T. Ocho Show. (Unfortunately for Owens, one of the 34 people watching was Mike Florio of PFT.)

"A hockey player would have took that and kept on tickin'," Owens said. "It just shows you how soft Ben is."

Owens was, of course, discussing the shot that Roethlisberger took from Richard Seymour. What makes that ridiculous is that the shot by Seymour (Owens says, "I liked it.") was just flat-out cheap.

Oh, and the fact that Owens is the last person who needs to be calling anyone "soft."

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com