PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger still has not received any answers from former teammate Antonio Brown as to why the relationship fell apart.
Roethlisberger reiterated his story about AB and the offseason at the first day of Steelers Organized Team Activities Tuesday at team headquarters on the South Side.
Big Ben sat down with KDKA’s Bob Pompeani ahead of OTAs for an exlusive interview to explain his side of the story and what is to come heading into the new season.
“I never saw any of this coming,” Roethlisberger said. “I would have loved to have had a chance to talk to him. Whatever I did to offend him, I apologize for it. I tried to do that in person but he wouldn’t allow me to do it.”
When Ben was questioned about the leadership issues that were cited by former teammates in the offseason, the veteran responded by saying a lot of the blame for last year’s shortcomings was on his shoulders.
“We didn’t win our division. I lacked in leadership, because that’s my job as the leader of this team: to get us to the playoffs. So, I’m going to need to focus and re-focus my energy and time on ‘How can I be a better leader to get us back to the playoffs?’”
Steelers defensive lineman Cam Heyward said he does not want to discuss anyone who does not play on the team anymore, citing that the book has closed on the Antonio Brown situation.
“That page has been turned for a while,” Heyward said. “I’m done bringing that stuff up. I don’t have nothing to do with that, and this team has nothing to do with that, as well. It’s not really on anybody, because that’s last year. I wish those guys nothing but luck, but the guys here are trying to get better. It’d be foolish for me to start worrying about guys who aren’t here.”
Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger Getting To Know New Teammates At OTA Practice —
He also had advice for some of the young players who are joining the team for the first time.
“If you want to get recognized then get recognized for the right reasons,” Heyward said. “That just means performing on the field and in the community.”
Steelers veteran guard Ramon Foster is also ready to move on from the drama and issues that surrounded the team last season. Foster claims the current team, not the national media, knows the real truth between players in the lockerroom.
“With what we’ve had to go through, I think it’s kind of numb now,” Foster said. “When some of that stuff is said, you kind of just laugh at it. Because the guys that know, they genuinely know.”
Some young players are happy to be in the mix, including first round pick inside linebacker Devin Bush, who is happy to be taking first-team reps so soon.
“It’s a super learning experience,” Bush said. “The guys get to learn me and I get to play alongside them and build some relationships.”
Alongside Bush is veteran Vince Williams at the inside linebacker position. Bush realizes how important it is to learn from a guy like Williams.
“Vince leads a lot by example. He shows you how to communicate, how to conduct an NFL defense, what to look for in checks and just how to play the full game.”