Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger Won’t Get Contract Extension Until Next Offseason

It’s going to be next offseason before Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger gets a contract extension, but he and his agent have both been informed about that decision and both appear to be on board with it.

“I met with Ben shortly before we did the Maurkice Pouncey signing (in the middle of June) just to make sure Ben understood where we were with our intentions as far as a contract extension for him,” said Steelers team president Art Rooney II to Bob Labriola of Steelers Digest. “I just didn’t want him to feel like we were moving ahead with other players without any communication.

“And so I talked to Ben, and then we talked with his agent Ryan Tollner about where we are and the fact we intend on addressing Ben’s contract situation after the season, so that we could address a number of players who were going into their last year in 2014. I think Ben understands that’s our intention and the way we’d like to proceed. I think we had a good conversation.”

Rooney goes on to say that they expect the salary cap to rise once again next offseason and that that will make it even easier to get a deal done with Roethlisberger.

“We believe the cap will go up again next year,” said Rooney, “and so from a cap planning standpoint, next year will be a better situation for us to address a franchise quarterback type of contract.”

By not getting a new deal done this offseason with Roethlisberger, the quarterback’s meter is still running and should the 2014 season end with a deep run into the playoffs or even another Lombardi Trophy, the price tag will likely go even higher, which it should.

When the Steelers have previously extended Roethlisberger, they did so when he had two years remaining on his current deal. When March and April of this offseason passed without a new deal, it was a sign that there quite possibly wouldn’t be an extension this offseason.

So what’s the time frame now? We know it will be next offseason, but when? I would guess possibly sometime in March. Roethlisberger is scheduled to earn a base salary of $11.6 million in 2015, the final year of his current contract.

  • Paul Hoover

    Go Steelers !! Ben #1 He deserves to retire a Steeler !!!! Good luck Ben and God bless… STAY HEALTHY !!!

  • steeltown

    Would love to pay him more as a result of another AFC crown and Chamionship

  • steelant

    4 years 90 million or 5 years 110 million

  • Jeff

    Ben wants to win too much for this to be ANY type of distraction whatsoever.

  • This is a really smart move by the Steelers, and it’s great that the two sides have communicated and that Ben appears to be in agreement with, or at least okay with, the team’s plans.

    I say it’s a smart move because too often teams rush into signing a franchise QB (or other player, in whatever sport we’re talking about), or a player they think is franchise but isn’t (see Flacco, Joe), and then try to build the team around him with whatever they have left, which may not be enough to be truly competitive. In this case, they can put the pieces in place knowing that they’ll have enough left to pay Ben what he’s worth. Deal with the here and now first (Pouncey, etc.), see what happens this year and adjust accordingly (Cortez, etc.), then sign Ben and make sure you’ve built a winner for the the last stretch of his career.

    I say it often and I’ll say it again: The Steelers are one brilliant organization, doing what it takes to win consistently while being respectful of the players and of the long tradition of success.

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    This is a good point. It is a win-win situation for us as fans.

    If the Steelers (and Ben) perform poorly this year, it saves us some money and allows cap room to bring in additional player(s) who can help us return to championship level.

    If the Steelers (and Ben) make a deep run in the playoffs and win the AFC Championship over Denver or New England he deserves the extra money.

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    I couldn’t agree more.

    Every QB in the NFL would love to re-negotiate with two years left. But it is still very reasonable to handle the extension with one year remaining.

    ESPECIALLY if you communicate clearly as to WHY you’re waiting and get the QB’s approval.

    Ben is an extremely loyal person. If you show him loyalty and treat him fairly he will battle like a gladiator for you. And he deserves to retire as a Steeler.

    And in all fairness though it’s actually better for Ben to wait one more year (in hopes that he has a better season in 2014). Because if you base his new contract off the last 3 seasons he won’t be getting paid what he thinks he deserves. And that would be a huge problem/decision.

  • Chris Ranieri


  • Bvrsty

    I was always looking at it similarly to you. Both sides have clarity of the end goal, and pretty much agreed upon already.

    If true, FO would be able to keep it in their back pocket, use it if cap room was needed, or save it for next year; the injury potential dollar difference was possibly mitigated with FEO (future employment opportunities) handshake agreement.

  • Dan

    Mixed opinion on this. It would be better to get it done now in order to:
    1.) Call it a “longer deal”, e.g. 5 year deal (but only extending 3 years) without adding too many years to player who be 34 when the added years start.
    2.) Get it done before the cap goes up. Why would you want to negotiate after they announce a higer cap? Just gives more leverage to the player.
    3.) Get some cap relief from his $18+mil hit this upcoming year.
    But advantages of waiting until next year are:
    1.) To gauge performance/injury status for another year before opening the vault.
    2.) Motivate the player in another “contract year”
    Personally I think we already have a good sense of his performance and propensity for injury, and I don’t think motivation is a real concern with Ben is an issue so I’d rather have gotten it done this year. But ya never know. Maybe the leverage will be more favorable next year.

  • Pete Johnson

    The closer he gets to FA, the more leverage Ben will have. I said it months ago why it was crucial to get this done now and not later. The price for QB’s will only go up (there are several franchise QB’s who will sign between now and then), and if Ben doesn’t like what he hears he can say “fine, I will test FA” where his price will skyrocket. He will still have a good 3-4 years left, so some team who is a QB away (and there are plenty) could offer him a nice 6 yr deal to end his career and steal him away.

    And spare me the whole..”well we can just franchise him”. Yeah we can do that, and eat up a massive part of our cap doing so in the process, handcuffing us to do anything else until…and if we get a long term deal done. That is a last resort, they would much rather have his cap number at 9m instead of 20m believe that.

    I really question despite what both sides are saying if a) the Steelers want to pay Ben the market rate for franchise QB’s or b) if Ben is going to take some huge discount (like ownership is angling for I guarantee). Only time will tell I guess.

  • SteelerMike

    Good, another smart move this offseason! There was little, if any, reason to rush out to throw more money at Ben this offseason. Much better to pay off his high cap number this year when the rest of the team has proven to be a .500 ballclub in major transition. I would have been disappointed if the front office handled this any other way.