FORT WORTH, Texas (KDKA) — Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger got a question he didn’t expect from reporters during a press conference in Fort Worth.
Each time he was asked about Milledgeville, Ga., he deferred and handed out a standard answer.
“Well, another reflective question. I know there’s going to be a lot of those this week and like I said, reflecting is not the thing to do right now,” Roethlisberger said.
There was another story that popped up. Peter King from “Sports Illustrated” did an interview recently with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.
During the interview, Goodell reportedly revealed frustration with Roethlisberger and “no connection” to him.
Goodell told King he was investigating what to do with Roethlisberger during the summer and at the time he spoke with more than two dozen of his teammates and no one defended their quarterback, according to King.
“Well, I know for a fact that when the commissioner came to the training camp and talked with a lot of guys – kind of did,” Roethlisberger said. “I’m just thankful my teammates are who they are and I really appreciate all of them.”
“I don’t know what he means or you mean by ‘come to his defense,’” Mike Tomlin said. “I don’t know the nature of the conversation or discussion, so it’s going to be difficult for me to comment on it to be quite honest with you.
“Ben is a highly-respected member of our football team not only because of what he’s done this year, but just as largely his body of work and the person that he is. We all fall short of perfection and we all make mistakes. His are well-documented. He’s doing the best that he can in terms of moving forward with it as is his teammates.”
Greg Aiello, a spokesman for the NFL, said Goodell made the comments more than a month ago.
“The commissioner didn’t come out with those comments this week or last week. He was interviewed more than a month ago on a myriad of subjects and this was just one small part of the interview,” Aiello said.
He said King decided to run the comments now for maximum effect because the Steelers and Roethlisberger are in the big game.
“He [Peter King] is exploiting the opportunity and exploiting the material,” Aiello said. He went on to say, “If the Steelers weren’t in the Super Bowl, we wouldn’t be having this conversation.”