Steelers

AFC Championship: Give Steelers Roethlisberger More Credit

| by Off The Record

Ask me to chose? I’ll take Philadelphia. While Pittsburgh has the rings and the cups, I’ll take Philadelphia. The truth is, it has nothing to do with the teams! 

Albeit, I never was and never will be a fan of Sidney Crosby, I think the Pens are a tough team. The Pirates are an absolute joke, but the city makes up for it with one of, if not, THE class organization of the NFL:  The Pittsburgh Steelers. 

The problem is the “my sh*t don’t stink” Steeler fans who ruin any big win or any big moment with a comment that makes you want to feed them a few drinks and lock them in a bathroom with Big Ben.

That said, being a Philadelphia guy and always backing the 2nd chance given to Michael Vick… I’m not one to bash Roethlisberger and act like he isn’t a great QB because of off the field poor judgment calls. The fact is, I don’t care. In a vacuum, I’m judging you on the player your are, not the person you are. Ben Roethlisberger is a hell of QB and needs to be in more of the “elite” conversations.

Ben Wins.  Period.  He wins in the regular season.  He wins in the post season.  Ben Wins.  He can beat you with his arm strength and accuracy.  He can pick up tough yards when needed.  Hell, he’ll even pick up a game-saving tackle on the Colt’s Nick Harper to lock up a win.  Everyone forgets that in 2005, had Big Ben not made that game-saving tackle with about 1:00 to go in the 4th… there is no title and perhaps we aren’t even having this conversation.  But we are…because he did… and they won.

Among quarterbacks with at least 10 playoff games starts, he is 2nd in win percentage only behind Bart Starr. In terms of playoff wins, only current or virtual lock Hall of Famers are ahead of him… such as Joe Montana, Terry Bradshaw and John Elway. He is already ahead of guys like Steve Young, Peyton Manning and Dan Marino. For all the talk about Tom Brady, he has eight more post season starts than Big Ben, and only five more wins. Could be four after this weekend.  Could be three after this season.

Compare that to his counterparts in the 2004 draft and it becomes even more impressive. Eli Manning has compiled a 4-3 record in his seven playoff starts and one Super Bowl win. Phillip Rivers is only 3-4 in his seven starts.  Ben is 9-2 with two rings.

 Just think about that. If Roethlisberger is able to get the Steelers back to the Superbowl, he’ll have three rings in seven years under center. If that happens he’ll have a post season record of 11-2!  Granted, a lot still needs to take place for that to come true, but it is certainly attainable.

Let’s be honest, neither Roethlisberger nor ANY QB in NFL history has ever won a preseason, regular season or playoff game on his own. Say what you want, you’re wrong.  But through the history books, plenty of great QB’s were surrounded by great teams.  Roethlisberger is no different.  Lucky for him, he gets to rape the benefits.  Freudian slip.  Lucky for him, he gets to REAP the benefits. 

My point is, regardless of what happens this Sunday, Ben deserves his props.  When you talk about top-tier QB’s, Big Ben better be mentioned. I honestly thought he was the best QB coming out of the 2004 draft (much in part because I hated Eli and wasn’t sure about Rivers) and he has proven that to date. Now I look forward to every one of my Pittsburgh pals making me regret everything I just wrote….