Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger speaks out on knee injury, comeback vs. Cowboys
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger suffered a knee injury in the first half against the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday, but that didn’t prevent him from leading his team to a comeback victory, which places the Steelers at 8-0 for the first time in franchise history.
Late in the second quarter, Roethlisberger hurt his left knee after being hit by defensive linemen Neville Gallimore and Demarcus Lawrence. The QB was noticeably limping and grabbing his leg in-between plays, though he was able to shake it off and promptly complete four straight passes — capped off by a 17-yard touchdown throw to James Washington that put the Steelers on the board.
Ben Roethlisberger then hit the locker room early for injury treatment, and Mason Rudolph subbed in for one possession before the half, which resulted in the franchise-record 59-yard field goal from Chris Boswell. Pittsburgh trailed 13-9 at the break to the depleted Cowboys.
Afterward, Roethlisberger shed some light on the injury.
“Someone hit me right on the side of the knee,” he said. “Felt like it kind of bent my knee a little bit. Part of the game of football. Guys get hit all the time. Have some discomfort, and so we thought, end of the half, we’ll head in and get it looked at. Doc just wanted me to keep him updated the second half, so I was just keeping it loose and keeping it warm.”
Ben Roethlisberger returned to the field for the third quarter. If he was hindered by the knee in the second half, you wouldn’t know it based on his performance, especially in the fourth quarter. He tossed two more TDs and led Pittsburgh on three fourth-quarter scoring drives to erase a 10-point deficit and eke out a 24-19 win. His 31-yard TD pass to JuJu Smith-Schuster on the first play of the fourth quarter seemed to spark the entire offense.
“We went to that same package that we went to last week, that kind of four-wide and a tight end, and said, ‘Listen, let’s just go to work,’ and the line blocked,” Roethlisberger said about the Smith-Schuster play. “I can’t say enough about the skill guys, the way that they’re able to do things on the fly and the line blocking.”
After getting the ball back with 4:11 to go, Ben Roethlisberger, as he has done so many times in his career, led one more scoring drive, this one ending with a go-ahead 8-yard TD pass to tight end Eric Ebron.
“I didn’t want to let my guys down,” Roethlisberger said. “I think so many times the line and guys are looking at me on the sideline, they’re like, ‘All right, Ben, we believe in you.’ I just don’t want to let them down. I want to give everything I have and fight. I wish that we didn’t have those fourth-quarter comebacks. I wish that I played better early in the games and that we were up and we didn’t have to do it. But that’s the way it is. If we have to have a situation like this where we have to score late or win in the fourth quarter, as long as we win, I’ll take it.”