Roethlisberger Working Diligently To Build Rapport With New Receivers

During the offseason, the Pittsburgh Steelers had quite a shakeup at the wide receiver position as Emmanuel Sanders and Jerricho Cotchery left via free agency, and veterans Lance Moore and Darrius Heyward-Bey were signed to replace them. Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger has stayed on top of those changes and is working to build a rapport with his new teammates.

“As often as I can I am here throwing and they are here every day catching and just trying to learn,” Roethlisberger recently told Teresa Varley of “It’s not a fast process. We have to learn how they like to come out of breaks, what balls they like to catch, high ones, low ones. There is a lot of work that goes into it, but they are both veteran guys that are experienced that I am looking forward to working with.”

Roethlisberger also said that part of the process of getting comfortable with his new receivers is learning their personalities and that started with a phone call to Moore right after it was announced he was signed.

The Steelers haven’t had this kind of turnover at the wide receiver position in several years but Roethlisberger understands the business side related to the moves and accepts the challenge related to it.

“To have a bunch of new guys come in, and some young guys that are back, it’s going to be different but it’s fun,” he said.

During the offseason, Roethlisberger also made sure to spend time with the young receivers on the roster as it was reported that Derek Moye and Justin Brown both joined the quarterback in California for a workout that included several draft hopefuls.

In addition, Roethlisberger reportedly called wide receiver Martavis Bryant, the Steelers fourth-round draft pick, 10 minutes after he was selected to welcome him to the team. He’s also already managed to throw a few passes to his new “tall” receiver that he reportedly has been longing for.

“Offensively speaking we needed to address a tall receiver and we got one,” Roethlisberger said.

Roethlisberger will next get to work with his brand new receiving core a week from Tuesday when the first set of OTA practices get underway at the Steelers facilities.

  • Pitfan0513

    With all the losses of leadership in the locker room I’m glad Big Ben is stepping up and being a leader that this team desperately needs!

  • StrengthOfVictory

    With all the turnover at receiver, we need Wheaton to have a Brown-esque sophomore season, and for Moore to become Ben’s new security blanket (the way Cotch was). It would be nice if Bryant could work on just five or six RZ plays to have at the ready.

  • blue

    Unstoppable if Haley implies 5 wide formation into playbook

  • Jacque Strappe

    Unstoppable if we get the ball to our sophomore RB out of the backfield.

  • Big White

    Lance Moore could be a really good fit for the Steelers. Matchups vs a team’s 3rd or 4th cover guy is where he had success in New Orleans before getting bumped for Kenny Stills.

  • Biggie

    The weapons are definitely there. Size, Speed and Power. If Munchak gets the OL in order which I believe he will, there will be no excuses for this offense to not succeed.

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    It will be very interesting to see how Archer is used. What if he just ran fly patterns at 4.2 speed like Wallace used to do? The defense would have to provide safety help right? That could really help out the other receivers?

  • chris ward

    Like the Steelers WR core with AB, Wheaton, Moore, and now the addition with Bryant. Wheaton needs to have a big year in his sophomore year. AB just needs to continue what he did in 13′, that was one of the most impressive single season performance from a Steelers WR since Hines back in the early 2000’s.

  • srdan

    You bring up a good point. We lost both defensive capitains from last year. I wonder who fills those voids.

  • steeltown

    Moore especially needs to get up to speed.. I have a feeling Wheaton and Ben have some rapport already dating back to last year and it should only get stronger with every passing week/month, but Moore needs to find his groove with Ben quickly

  • Eric MacLaurin

    Good news!

    I think one of the reasons the Steelers are focusing more on character is the new CBA is going to require good teams to have players that self manage organized offseason workouts.

    In my dream world Ben gets a big estate with a practice field and they spend a month before training camp with the whole team at his place making a commitment to doing more than every other team.

  • Eric MacLaurin

    I agree 100%

    Haley will use him a lot more to draw a double team and create more room for Bell, Heath and AB than he will to actually give him the ball.

    I am excited to see how they use him in the no huddle. I think he could be a nightmare in the no huddle with his speed and ability to line up anywhere. You could trap personnel on the field that would simply force a defensive time out.

  • Big White

    I think the biggest question with the receiving corps is now DHB. I love his speed and big play ability, particularly as cheap as we got him. However, these younger receivers need reps. I’m not comfortable with Wheaton or Bryant anywhere near or behind DHB. DHB is a depth signing and a guy you send down field as a decoy.

  • Ryan

    Cam Heyward is already stepping up to be a D leader.

  • Shawn S.

    And his bruiser backup.

  • Shawn S.

    I’m glad Ben is getting reps in not only for the new receivers’ benefit, but also for his. His accuracy will need to be on point, having to throw catchable balls to tall (Bryant, Moye, DHB), mid-sized (Brown, Wheaton, Moore), and small (Archer) targets. He had accuracy issues early on last year, but corrected it the second half of the season. It’s a good sign that he’s been this proactive in the off season. Go Steelers.

  • Moneypenny76

    I think it’s a good thing the old guys have been mostly cleared out. I think when you have a lot of very established, very vocal veterans it can make it harder for the younger guys to step up. Now with the leadership void, new leaders are emerging.

    SImilarly, I have often wondered if Hines being SO vocal is part of the reason Ben wasn’t more of the typical strong leader type QB early in his career. It’s not a criticism of Hines, and I’m sure Ben had his hands full as a rookie, but Hines had such a big mouth Ben probably never had a chance to get a word in. LOL!

  • Moneypenny76

    We should be going 5 wide…we have one of the best QBs in the league and a fast group of WRs. It’s a waste if we don’t take more advantage of that

  • Moneypenny76

    I’m actually excited to see what DHB can do with Ben throwing him the ball. If he clicks here, he could be a HUGE weapon for the team.

  • Zach

    Agreed — the offense should be fine, we lost last year because of D…given that we have a young defense (other than Troy and Ike), I see us an year away of having a top-3 D again.

  • Zach

    I don’t see DHB making the team…it’s either him or Bryant.

  • Moneypenny76

    Bryant is definitely making the team. The last spot is either DHB or Moye, and it could go either way but I think it will be DHB