It's an end of an era for the Pittsburgh Steelers. Their playoff loss to the Chiefs in the Wild Card round may be quarterback Ben Roethlisberger's final game of his career. The 39-year-old quarterback has been mulling retirement all season long, and fans have been bracing for his official announcement.
Amidst all the speculation around his retirement, Ben Roethlisberger reflected on what could be his final game as a Steelers player. (via Brooke Pryor)
“It's tough. I'm proud to play with these guys. God has blessed me with an ability to throw a football and blessed me to play in the greatest city … it's been a blessing.”
Ben Roethlisberger on emotions coming off the field: "it's tough. I'm proud to play with these guys. God has blessed me with an ability to throw a football and blessed me to play in the greatest city … it's been a blessing."
— Brooke Pryor (@bepryor) January 17, 2022
Ben Roethlisberger's legacy in Pittsburgh is complicated, but is full of accolades. Detractors will point to his rape allegation cases and inability to win during the latter stages of his career. Still, when just looking at his on-field achievements, there's no question that Big Ben is a near-lock to make it to the Hall of Fame.
Two Super Bowl championships and six Pro Bowl selections undersell what Roethlisberger means to the Steelers franchise. As soon as they drafted Big Ben, the franchise's hopes immediately turned around, as he went 13 – 0 to start his career. That hot start was a precursor of what was to come for them, as the Steelers would have a winning record every year that Roethlisberger was under center for them.
Steeler Nation will now look forward to the team's plans at the quarterback position after Roethlisberger's retirement. According to recent reports, they may be looking at improving through the draft or internally. Whoever gets the QB1 spot next season, though, will have immensely huge shoes to fill.