Ben Roethlisberger's rookie year in the NFL was successful, but it came to an end when the Pittsburgh Steelers lost to the New England Patriots by the core of 41-27 in the AFC Championship game. Ben Roethlisberger recently had legendary Steelers running back Jerome Bettis on his podcast called “Footbahlin with Ben Roethlisberger” and they said they believe the Patriots were cheating on that day.
Jerome Bettis detailed a critical 4th-and-1 play in the game when the Patriots called a timeout and the nose guard went to the sideline, according to his words.
“Who normally goes to the sideline on timeouts? The defensive captains, right?” Bettis said. “They told the nose guard, [Ted] Washington, they pulled him to the sideline. Big 400-pound guy, he don't want to go to the sideline and come all the way back. What he want to go to the sideline for? … They stopped us on fourth down. That's a critical play in the game.”
Ben Roethlisberger and Jerome Bettis say the Patriots stole their signs and cheated in the 2004 AFC Championship Game.
🎥: Footbahlin with Ben Roethlisberger pic.twitter.com/ng5JKhkEmF
— Jarrett Bailey (@JBaileyNFL) September 25, 2023
After the stop on fourth down, Tom Brady connected with Deion Branch on a 60-yard touchdown to give the Patriots a 10-0 lead in the first quarter.
This is not the first time the Patriots have been accused of cheating, especially from that era.
It was noted that the Patriots did not even call a timeout on that 4th-and-1 sequence, and did not call a timeout until the second quarter of the game, according to Conor Ryan of Boston.com.
The Steelers and Patriots fans do not like each other very much, and this will certainly fan the flames for some on both sides.