It has been a tumultuous offseason for the Pittsburgh Steelers, but Ben Roethlisberger appears willing to bridge the gap with his teammates.
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger will head into arguably the most difficult season of his career, as his top wide receiver, Antonio Brown, forced his way out of town after a highly-publicized dispute with management. Roethlisberger’s leeway with criticizing teammates – and Brown’s own issues working with the veteran quarterback – played a huge role in the NFL’s most decorated wide receiver fighting for a trade out of Pittsburgh.
Criticisms of Roethlisberger’s leadership, fanned by the flames of mis-placed words made by general manager Kevin Colbert, grew as a result of this saga. Perhaps in an effort to make peace with his teammates and show the fans that he’s serious about being the most supportive teammate possible, Roethlisberger is reportedly willing to end his weekly radio show.
According to Matt Verderame of FanSided, Roethlisberger is expected to give up his weekly radio show in Pittsburgh prior to the 2019 season. A team spokesman was unaware of the decision, but two sources have strongly indicated the move is expected to take place.
Roethlisberger’s radio show, which airs every Tuesday during the season on 93.7 The Fan, drew plenty of heat this offseason, as some were upset that the quarterback could critique his teammates on a public forum. However, Roethlisberger, who is 37 years old and has quarterbacked two Super Bowl-winning teams, asserted that he has every right to do this. Again, his general manager did not dispute this either.
Mounting pressure and the loss of important pieces around him may have caused Roethlisberger to change his mind. Roethlisberger once caught heat for subtly knocking backup quarterback Mason Rudolph after he was drafted, so it would be a strong gesture for him to step down from his radio show. He likes to speak his mind, but as a quarterback who has been successful in this league for many years, his words carry plenty of weight and are bound to be picked apart.
This can minimize one distraction from the Steelers, because with young players set to step up and a critical season ahead for people like head coach Mike Tomlin, the Steelers can ill-afford anything that could create the slightest bit of controversy.