PITTSBURGH (93-7 The FAN) – The season may be over for the Steelers, but The #1 Cochran Ben Roethlisberger Show rolled on for one more week and, as usual, Ben made plenty of headlines.
Our Steelers Insider Ed Bouchette reported yesterday that Ben wants to play three more seasons, so that’s where things started today as Ben was asked to confirm that report and how much longer he wants to play.
“I’m just playing it one year at a time,” Ben told us. “I’m excited to come back next year. I know Ed said that he heard that some guys said something about me playing for another three years. I’m not going to look past one year. I’m going to look forward to next year and give it everything I have.”
The other part of Ed’s report yesterday stated that Todd Haley may not return next year, so naturally Ben was asked about that and how he feels.
“I don’t have any control over the coaching staff…obviously that’s very apparent in a few years ago when B.A. [Bruce Arians] was gone. You know everyone knows that we had a great relationship and he was still let go.”
Ben also told us that he met with Coach Haley just the two of them in his office and they sat down “for a while” talking about the season, how far they came as an offense and all the things they were able to accomplish this year.
When pressed on his relationship with Haley this year and if he felt like it wasn’t in a good place, Ben said “There’s always issues in a competitive field like we have” and “you might butt heads at times, it doesn’t mean that you have any personal problems.” In fact, Ben admitted that he and Haley laughed yesterday about the reports of their personal problems.
Looking back at the loss to Jacksonville specifically, Ben was asked about one of the biggest issues we’ve heard about on the station, the teams failure to convert on 4th and 1 and why they don’t ever just have him run a quarterback sneak.
“I’d love to” Ben said about running it. “I actually literally tuned in to you guys for two minutes and heard you guys and the fans bashing us for not quarterback sneaking and not believing me when I say that we don’t run it and I want to do it. Since it’s my show now, I can speak freely and tell you guys, my co-hosts, that I truly have never said ‘I don’t want to run it’ and I don’t have the freedom to check to a quarterback sneak because we don’t have that call if we’re not in the huddle.”
“If you’re at the line of scrimmage, we don’t have a call to get to a quarterback sneak…am I supposed to whisper to everyone ‘quarterback sneak’?”
Ben even went as far as to tell us that he has petitioned Mike Tomlin to add a quarterback draw to their two-point conversion playbook.
“When we get to like the two-yard line, two point play, to spread the defense out and go empty and run quarterback draw. I’ve asked for that. He laughs at me and says ‘Ben, maybe in your younger days, not now.’ I still ask for those things. I would love the quarterback sneak. Hopefully we’ll get into more of it.”
One thing that may have hurt the Steelers against Jacksonville was the extra motivated they supplied the Jaguars with by talking about looking ahead to New England. David DeCastro has since spoken out against his teammates that did that, calling it “embarrassing.” Ben was asked if he shares that same sentiment.
“I wish guys wouldn’t do it, that’s one of the reasons that I don’t do social media…it’s unnecessary, it’s uncalled for.”
The final #1 Cochran Ben Roethlisberger Show of the year wrapped up with Ben not talking football, but instead baseball, as he was asked for his thoughts on the Pirates trading Andrew McCutchen.
It was in the not-so-distant past that Ben spoke out publicly on his show pleading with the Pirates to not trade Cutch and he admitted he was caught off guard when it actually happened.
“I didn’t even know he was up to be traded…Just sad for fans, sad for all of us here in Pittsburgh because what a true class act and a gentleman and a baseball player. He’s going to be sorely missed but I’m sure he’ll always be a Pittsburgh guy.”
Click on the audio at the top of the page to hear more from Ben on the past season, his plans for the future and that of his teammates and if he’ll be attending the Pro Bowl this year.