PITTSBURGH (93-7 The Fan) – Coming off their second straight game with an offensive outburst, Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger joined The Cook and Poni Show for The #1 Cochran Ben Roethlisberger Show to talk about how things started clicking for the team.
To hear Ben say is though, there’s still plenty of room for improvement.
“It felt good. We did some good things. It wasn’t perfect, maybe wasn’t even great at times, but it was good enough most of the time to get it done.”
The offense isn’t without its warts though as we saw dropped passes by Eli Rogers and Jesse James. Ben told us why he has the faith in those guys to go right back to them.
“When Eli dropped the one up the seam, I can remember it specifically, he kind of looked of looked at me, he was down, and I just gave him a look like, ‘Hey, it’s ok. You’ll make that. We’re fine. It’s not the end of the world.’
“Same thing with all those guys. I think they look at me after those plays and one bad thing about dropping it is letting the guys down, but I also feel sometimes they look at me like, ‘Uh-oh, we let Ben down. Is he gonna be upset?’ No, I think they know now it’s not the end of the world. I’ll let coaches get on you, but I’m not gonna get on you and scream at you because I’m coming right back to you as soon as I can.”
One guy you don’t often see drop balls for the Steelers is Antonio Brown, and he had a monster game against the Packers last week catching 10 passes for 169 yards and two touchdowns with two critical receptions on the game winning drive that got the team in field goal range for Chris Boswell.
Ben shared with us how much easier his life is out there because of Brown while also giving credit to Le’Veon Bell for making a huge impact in the passing game when the Packers doubled Brown.
“What a special football player,” Ben said about Brown. “I talked about that after the game a little but is how great he is. He makes plays that it’s so much fun to watch. I honestly thought Le’Veon was the MVP of the passing game and I know that sounds crazy to people, but I’m out there, I know what plays are being made and yes, AB is going to make the highlight plays, but there were a lot of plays in that game where the linebackers were getting depth and trying to get underneath some of those in-routes and stuff that we were trying to get AB the ball, and Le’Veon was getting out. The first thing he does on a lot of passes, he has to check protection. So he’s checking to see if his guy blitzes, and sometimes it’s multiple guys, he has to check two or three guys to see if anybody blitzes. When no one does, then he has to get out into his route, and when he gets out in his route, sometimes it’s man and he has to run a man beater, sometimes it’s zone and he has to find a spot, so for him, there’s a lot more involved than just kind of running out and turning around, and he had so many catches and touches, and we missed on a couple, but I really felt like his game in the pass game was exceptional.
Before the game though head coach Mike Tomlin made a comment on the NBC pregame show with Tony Dungy that shocked everyone when he said he’d address the “elephant in the room” that is New England as they recognize that’s the big matchup that waits for them in week 15.
“He’s the head coach, he’s allowed to think about whatever game or whatever elephant in the room or whatever matchups, things like that. For me, I am 100% on Cincinnati and nothing else. That is my biggest focus because these guys are going to come out to get us. I mean they want to ruin our playoff chances.”
That being said, Ben was asked if, during the course of a season, they gameplan for specific teams that are coming up in later weeks.
“I don’t, not at all. Not one thing of Patriots film…There is zero Patriots…There is zero film work, talk, anything like that from me for any team other than the Bengals right now.”
Despite the focus being on the team in front of them each week, Ben did admit that in the preseason they work on things that they think will work against specific opponents.
“I know sometimes when we go into training camp and we’re doing stuff and we’re putting plays in and we’re installing things, I do know that we do things for specific teams. Sometimes we’ll put in a protection and be like ‘Ok, this will be good against Baltimore because they do this, or this will be good against Cincinnati because they like this good coverage.’ So yes in a sense, but it’s more than just the Patriots. There’s a lot of teams we deal with in that sense.”
Click the link at the top of the post to hear more from Ben on last weeks win, getting ready for the Bengals and Vontaze Burfict and keeping their focus on the opponent in front of them.
The #1 Cochran Ben Roethlisberger Show is heard exclusively every Tuesday at 11 am during the Steelers season on The Cook and Poni Show on Sportsradio 93-7 The Fan.