Roethlisberger Says He Might Be Forcing Ball To Brown Too Much

While the Pittsburgh Steelers defense certainly had a big part in the team’s Sunday road loss to the Chicago Bears, the offense also deserves a good portion of the blame. Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger wasn’t very sharp Sunday on his way to completing 22 of 39 total pass attempts for 235 yards with one touchdown. He was also sacked three times during the game.

During his weekly Tuesday morning interview on 93.7 The Fan, Roethlisberger talked about his off performance against the Bears at Soldier Field on Sunday.

“You know, I had a bad day at the office,” Roethlisberger said. “Usually bad days at the office for me are throwing interceptions and not completing balls, and obviously there was the sack-fumble, a guy came off my blindside, but I’ll take the blame for that one for not seeing the hot and getting the ball out of my hands.”

That sack-fumble happened on a 3rd and 8 play from the Bears 38-yard-line with 6:23 left in the first quarter and it included a Chicago defensive back blitzing off the edge. Roethlisberger seemingly never saw the blitzer and thus missed a wide open Eli Rogers on that side of the field. While Rogers was open short of the chains, he still may have had enough room to get the first down. Instead, Roethlisberger stayed locked on wide receiver Antonio Brown, who was running a deep route down the left side of the field.

Tuesday morning, Roethlisberger admitted that he might be locking in too much on Brown right now.

“We just weren’t on our details,” Roethlisberger said. “There were some details that I wasn’t on. Making the right read and throwing, maybe trying to force it to A.B., because A.B. and I have such a relationship and trust that I know he’s going to be doing his right thing every time when other guys might not be on the right step or the right depth.

“I know where A.B.’s going to be and sometimes that forces me to just zone-in to him, because we’ve created big plays and we make things happen. And I just need to be better at taking what the defense gives us and making the right throw. I missed a couple of throws early and was just really disappointed with that performance and the loss and I take the blame. I think if I have an even little bit better of a game, I think we win it.”

Roethlisberger, however, did admit Tuesday morning that the pre-game anthem actions and the events that took place the night before probably also played some role in the team’s poor showing during the game.

“I do,” said Roethlisberger said when asked if he agrees with comments made Tuesday morning by linebacker Arthur Moats that the pre-game anthem events probably distracted the team. “Like you said, I’ll never make excuses, I have to play better. If I play better, we win the football game, I think. But it was definitely on a lot of our minds and a lot of our hearts, dealing with everything that we dealt with the night before. Being up later than usual, the distractions, whatever it is. But we still have to step on the field and play football. At the end of the day, we need to go out and be better football players than we were on Sunday.”

  • KiJana Haney

    Thank the lord. I have been thinking of this non-stop.

  • WreckIess

    I don’t know if it took him until now to realize this, but if so, that’s kind of troubling.

  • Phil Brenneman II

    “might” and “maybe” lmao

  • Michael Conrad

    I have been saying it all year. I understand his trust in AB but so does the D.

  • John Noh

    Like it says in any 12-step program, admitting you have a problem is always the first step. Good start, Ben.

  • Mark

    You think Ben? You constantly force the ball to AB and never take what the defense is giving you. As a result, you throw a 20 yard pass downfield on 3rd and 2 to stall a drive. You hold onto the ball trying to make a spectacular play when the 6 yards pass with a yac of 2 yards produces a 1st down. I wish we paid you by the number of 1st downs you generate. You are a captain and 14 year veteran who still throws deep when underneath routes are wide open. It’s widely known that you will not drive the team down the field with the short pass but must have that homerun ball.

    Thank you for coming back for last season, because it’s going to be a stinker if you don’t take what the defense is giving you. The defensive game plan is out on Ben, play WR’s man 2 man, double AB and force Ben to throw the ball in the middle of the field, because he will not take the check down routes that eat up clock and 5 to 8 yards.

  • Ace

    Well good of him for admitting it. Not defending him but it’s kinda hard to blame him for locking in on AB. If what he says is correct it seems he doesn’t have a whole lot of trust in his other receivers. Bad depth, bad routes. That’s a little scary for us and probably a lot scary for him. He’d got a world class all time great at WR1. A guy coming off missing more than a year of action with suspect route running ability and shaking hands at WR2. Eli who he has never been on the same page with it seems as WR3 and the youngest player in the NFL as WR4. I don’t know what goes on in their game plan meetings but I would like to see them game plan Eli and JuJu more and get Vance on the field stretching the seam. AB will always be there and MB is really just a deep threat at this time. Haley really needs to earn him money this week or Baltimore is going to shut us down (I’m betting the under anyone else?) and we will be in the same place next week: “What’s wrong with the offense?”

  • Ace

    Yeah and his checkdown’s have been way off target so far. Him and Bell are not clicking. It seems like when he does checkdown it’s rushed and off target and leaves Bell no room. 4.3 yds/catch not too good so far. Or it clangs off Bells hands. Or it’s at the end of regulation in a tie game with 50 seconds to go and he check’s down for a 4 yard game that eats up 27 seconds of game time. Yeesh.

  • Smitty 6788

    Thanks Ben! I hope he follows thru and takes what’s given and trust the guys do their jobs for the rest of this season. If he does that we’ll be hard to beat.

  • T R

    no kidding!!!

  • T R

    you can’t read and learn the lyrics then sing a different song doing the game!!

  • Darth Blount 47

    I personally find the Big Ben candor lately to be quite refreshing. Though his comments are sometimes stark and even so honest that you have to sort of question if they are legitimate, it beats having to always break out my Little Orphan Annie decoder ring to figure out what Tomlin is really trying to say.

    It’s not the “Antonio Brown” or “ball” part that anyone has an issue with. It is of course the “forced” part that we question. Brown makes catches, runs routes, and makes the plays, that very few other guys can do. And because of that, Brown should ALWAYS be a focal point of this offense. I don’t care WHO is covering him. Sherman, Rhodes, Peterson, Peters, whoever. But sometimes the best thing we can do is use him as a decoy to set other guys up for their own successes. Go away from him for a bit to let the defenses relax a tad and start to think that Ben is not looking his way, and THEN go right back to him. A bit of a cat and mouse game could go a long way.

    The weirdest part about Ben’s game lately, is the lack of working the middle of the field in the short/intermediate routes. And I can’t help but think that a TE who could open that up is what is so desperately lacking. No offense to Jesse, but I personally can’t WAIT to see what we have with McDonald. If anything.

    But as of today, I still think the targets in next year’s draft are becoming more crystal clear by the week.

  • Darth Blount 47

    A WR screen? Game 1 I think. A RB screen? It seems like the 20th century.