ESPN's Steve Young says Ben Roethlisberger is 'in the middle of transition'

Justin K. Aller

Young's comments came in wake of former Ravens linebacker turned ESPN analyst Ray Lewis's comments Friday on how the Steelers have changed from what they used to be.

It's obvious to ESPN analyst and Hall of Fame quarterback Steve Young the Steelers 'just don't look the same' as they have over the last 10 years. According to Young, the team is amid a transition and quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is "stuck in the middle of it."

What exactly is this transition?

Is it the continued transition from Hines Ward, as fellow former-player-turned-analyst Ray Lewis alluded to Friday? Is it the constant scrutiny under which the team is placed due to its lack of ability to run the football successfully?

Whatever it is, Roethlisberger is usually the one getting something of a pass from the media, just not from himself.

Roethlisberger understands, as the leader of this team and face of the franchise, winning and losing may not come down solely on him, but he's in the best position to affect either of those outcomes. What's clear is few quarterbacks, if any, are able to do their jobs successfully when large men paid to put him on the ground are frequently in his face.

If that's the transition - a younger and more athletic offensive line, as opposed to the maulers they had in 2005, Roethlisberger's second year - then ok. If it's a transition to "smaller, quicker receivers," like Lewis alluded to, then fine. The reality is there aren't any simple answers, but it's incumbent on the Steelers as a whole, and not just Roethlisberger, to find the smoothest way to navigate the franchise through this alleged transition.

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