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Ben Roethlisberger gave pep talk to Steelers prior to Bengals game

Ben Roethlisberger

Ben Roethlisberger can’t play for the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2019 as he recovers from season-ending elbow surgery. However, that’s not going to stop him from inspiring his team. Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette explains that Roethlisberger gave a pregame pep talk to the Steelers before Monday night’s game against the Cincinnati Bengals.

Whatever Roethlisberger said, it must’ve inspired his teammates. The Steelers smashed the Bengals 27-3 in Pittsburgh.

“He just talked about the opportunity and not taking for granted being able to play,” cornerback Joe Haden said, via Dulac. “Coming from Ben, knowing he played such a long time and see how much he misses it, how much he wants to be out there, it puts it in perspective for a lot of guys.”

It resonated with his teammates, even if he couldn’t lead them into battle.

“I think it resonated with a lot of guys,” defensive end Cam Heyward said, per Dulac. “It’s up to us to pick up the slack. He’s done a lot for us over the years. It sucks not having him this year. Maybe one day we can return the favor.

His blindside protector was another that raved about Roethlisberger and his pep talk.

“For a player like Ben Roethlisberger, who was born to play football, it says something about the man,” left tackle Alejandro Villanueva said, via Dulac. “It opens the eyes and hearts of those players who, maybe in the back of their minds, take it for granted.”

The more baby-faced James Conner mentioned that Roethlisberger didn’t just help with the pep talk, he also helped young quarterback, Mason Rudolph.

“That’s our leader, so his presence was definitely felt,”Conner said, per Dulac. “Just having our leader there was huge for us and having him on the sideline, communicating, relaying messages to Mason [Rudolph], him telling us what he sees. He did everything he could except play.”

Hopefully, for the sake of the Steelers, Roethlisberger has another inspiring pep talk in him.

Next week, they won’t be facing the hapless Bengals; instead, the angry, 2-2 Baltimore Ravens.