Below is the video and transcript of Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger press conference following the Thursday OTA practice session. It is the first time Ben has met the media since being reinstated to practice with team.
Opening Statement: I know you guys have been waiting to talk to me, and I have to you. I just want to let you guys know how good it is to be back on the field. It’s been a long time away. It’s been hard, but I’ve been putting in a lot of time and effort, and working hard, both on and off the field, while I’ve been gone. It’s not the same. I love football to death, but I think it’s meant more to be out here with my teammates, my brothers, my family, if you will, so that’s what has been really neat about being back out here. I’ve put a lot of thought into my life, decisions I’ve made in the past that I’ve been sitting at home thinking about things, and working closely with the Commissioner on ways to make changes, corrections. I’m looking forward to the second chance and the second opportunity, not just in football – because I think everybody knows what you’re going to get in football – but in life. I think that’s what is more important. I’m happy to be out here, and even kind of happy to see you guys again.
Question: Can you talk about the public support from your teammates, and do you look at this as a new beginning?
Ben Roethlisberger: It’s been great to read and hear from those guys. Not just text messages and calls they sent to me, but to read the things in the media they say. That’s why I say it’s great to be out here with my brothers. They really are family to me. I have spent a lot of time evaluating and looking at my life both on and off the field and I think this is s a time for me to close the chapter on the last couple of years of my life and move on to a new one, kind of a new start. I am really excited about it.
Question: What kind of changes are you talking about that you want to make?
Ben Roethlisberger: A lot of them are personal things, which is just something I need to do. It’s been neat being able to re-evaluate my life and spend time with my family and re-evaluate and re-figure what’s important in life. That’s me. Evaluating what I need to do and be smarter when it comes to certain things. It’s a new chapter. I am looking forward to it. It starts with football. I am glad to be back out here.