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PITTSBURGH (93-7 The FAN) – It was a slow week for Ben Roethlisberger last week for the best of reasons as he was able to rest in Week 17 against the Browns and he joined “The Cook and Poni Show” for The “#1 Cochran Ben Roethlisberger Show” to talk about the added rest he’s getting and how the team is preparing for the playoffs.
“I had discussions with Coach [Tomlin] in the fourth quarter of the Texans game whenever I was out, I was standing on the sidelines talking to him I said, ‘Hey, I’m not sure what your thought is for next week, but I’d love to get some reps if you’re okay with that.’ He kind of looked at me and said ‘Let me think about it, I’ll let you know,'” Roethlisberger said.
Ben didn’t want to share the exact conversations he had with Tomlin, but admitted he tried to argue for some reps but was turned down.
Asked if there could be any rust after not playing for multiple weeks, Ben didn’t seem concerned.
“Having two weeks off is different than just having a bye week, but on the other hand it is nice to get your body rested up,” he said.
When it was pointed out that he’ll actually go three weeks without playing, he said, “This is the postseason, you’ve got to be ready to go and fired up.”
Looking ahead to who they could face in the second round of the playoffs, Ben admitted he has his sights set on one opponent in particular.
“I’ll give you guys one guess who you think I want to play,” Ben said.
When Ron Cook guessed Jacksonville, the team he threw five interceptions against earlier this year, Ben chuckled and said, “Obviously, any game that we’re going to play since it’s the postseason is going to be a difficult opponent, but I think just for me personally I’d love to just prove that five interceptions wasn’t me in that game.”
Aside from the playoffs, the other big story surrounding the Steelers has been the release of James Harrison and the former Steeler signing with the Patriots. Ben was asked if he saw the Harrison situation as a distraction as some of his current teammates spoke out against him.
“It was surprising when it happened, it was surprising when he got released, it was surprising that he went there. I stick by my comments that I made that week that I’ve been blessed to play a long time with James Harrison,” Ben said.
When asked about Harrison’s two sack performance in the Patriots’ season finale against the Jets, Ben admitted he didn’t even watch the game.
And it wouldn’t be an edition of “The #1 Cochran Ben Roethlisberger Show” if there wasn’t more talk about Ben’s relationship with offensive coordinator Todd Haley. This time, it stems from a report that quarterbacks coach Randy Fichtner has helped bridge the communication gap between Ben and Haley since moving from the box down to the field.
“Yeah, I would says so” Ben said admitting that Fichtner is a help in the communication process because of how much they work together throughout the week. “So, we all kind of made the decision that let’s bring him down so that there’s constant lines of communication.”
Asked if he relationship with Haley is “still good,” Ben said simply, “Yeah, yeah.”
Click the link at the top of the post to hear more from Ben on Antonio Brown still trying to rehab and get ready for the playoffs, his former offensive coordinator Bruce Arians announcing his retirement and how he feels about Steelers’ offensive line coach Mike Munchak getting some looks for head coaching jobs already this offseason.