Imagine the Pittsburgh Steelers being a blocked punt away from being 0-4 on the season. 0-4! How far does loyalty get you in the NFL? We understand the ramifications of delivering 2 Super Bowls to an organization and making three appearances, but how irrational can you be? Who takes responsibility for this start?
Quite frankly, the writing has been on the wall before the season.
Did Kevin Colbert and company not see this happening with Ben Roethlisberger? Father Time is undefeated and coming off several significant injuries in the last three seasons (including a pectoral injury on your throwing arm) and one of the worst offensive lines in recent memory, doesn’t give you a recipe for success. Not to mention, this attributes to Ben throwing the ball over 40 times a game while approaching the age of 40. What we’ve witnessed from the Steelers to open the season is a complete catastrophe.
Having the 28th rated quarterback rating out of 32 teams shows, not only the reluctance of an organization to bench you, but stupidity. I love Ben, like any other Steeler and he’s had chance after chance to show what ranks him within the top echelon of quarterbacks to ever grace the black and gold, but what we’re witnessing isn’t greatness – It’s a complete dumpster fire. What makes it worst is the Steelers face a cap hit this year of $25 million due to Ben’s contract, which included a $15 million signing bonus that was ultimately pro-rated to help sign other stars such as T.J. Watt – who became the highest paid defensive player a month ago.
Does Mike Tomlin Deserve Some Criticism?
We know the headlines. Mike Tomlin has never had a losing season as Steelers’ head coach. He’s a player’s coach. The standard is the standard. If he’d walk away or be fired today, he would have 5 or more head coaching gigs tomorrow. We understand his greatness. Nevertheless, how far does greatness get you? Hard decisions come with the territory. The chemistry is unmatched between Ben and Mike. Moreover, as head coach, Mike gets paid to make tough decisions.
Mike Tomlin should immediately bench Ben Roethlisberger. If you’ve seen the last three Steelers’ games you have witnessed that Ben has not only been inaccurate, but is unable to move in the pocket. The inability to throw the ball in stride with his receivers is also telling. Just yesterday, Juju Smith-Schuster had two wide open touchdowns without a defender within five yards and Ben overthrew him both times by at least 7-8 yards. Those are throws that are uncharacteristic of Ben.
The offensive line is in shambles. The Steelers have four new players on the offensive line starting this season. The offensive tackles are being driven five yards off the line of scrimmage right into Ben. Containment can’t hold past three seconds. There are zero rushing lanes for your first-round pick Najee Harris, who was brought in to carry the load for a running attack that was non existent last year. This is another example of why Ben has been forced to throw the ball within 2-3 seconds after the snap. Even when Ben has had time to throw the ball to his weapons, who consist of Juju, Diontae Johnson, Chase Claypool, James Washington and others, he’s made the wrong read downfield. It’s ok to settle for the first down pass, versus going for the home-run ball. Move the chains and time of possession; don’t giving the defense early Christmas gifts.
The fact is, the Steelers have no contingency plan. Mason Rudolph has never been the answer for the Steelers. Dwayne Haskins has showed promise, but isn’t ready either. The Steelers put all their eggs in a basket and fumbled the bag..literally.
If I’m Mike Tomlin I’d bench Ben and prepare for the future. Maybe this gives Roethlisberger a wakeup call to get it together. We are only four games in the season and the tabloids are saying the Steelers should wave the white flag. Yes, every team within the division already has a two game lead on the Steelers at 3-1 on paper. In reality, the Steelers’ offensive line can’t stop a runny nose and Ben looks like father Abraham in the pocket.