PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – The Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger has issued a statement on his season-ending elbow injury.

Roethlisberger said in his statement:

“I’ve been informed that I need season ending surgery on my elbow to continue playing football at the level I expect. This is shocking and heartbreaking for me, to miss this much of a season and feel like I am letting down so many people. I can only trust God’s plan, but I am completely determined to battle through this challenge and come back stronger than ever next season. The Steelers committed three years to me this offseason and I fully intend to honor my contract and reward them with championship level play. I will do all I can to support Mason and the team this season to help win games. I love this game, my teammates, the Steelers organization and fans, and I feel in my heart I have a lot left to give.”

Roethlisberger injured his elbow in Sunday’s game against the Seattle Seahawks. He left after showing visible discomfort with his throwing arm in the first half against Seattle.

Mason Rudolph filled in for Big Ben. Rudolph now has the opportunity to run the offense for the rest of the Steelers’ season, which has barely just begun.

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Rudolph said that the extra reps he has received as Pittsburgh’s No. 2 quarterback paid dividends when he was thrust into the lineup.

“You gotta be prepared for those situations whenever your number is called,” said Rudolph, who beat out Josh Dobbs, now heading to Jacksonville, for the job as Pittsburgh’s backup quarterback during the preseason.

“I thought I was ready. I had a really good feel for the age plan and what we had worked on all week. It was good to get that Wednesday practice in; I kinda look forward to getting when you’re in the backup spot. I had a lot of reps this week, and I didn’t feel like I was unprepared, by any means.”

While Rudolph may be optimistic, the Steelers’ Super Bowl odds plummeted.

SPN’s Ben Fawkes says the Steelers went from a 40-1 to 100-1 odds to win the Super Bowl at Caesar Sportsbooks.

The Steelers were 20-1 to win the Super Bowl before the season started.