It looked as if it was going to be one of those days for the Pittsburgh Steelers, but mainly for Ben Roethlisberger. A first half which was littered with mistakes, confusion and poor play. Fans everywhere likely felt the way I did watching this game unfold, “How can they be this bad after an extra week to prepare...for the Colts!”
Despite the slow start, on both sides of the football, the team was able to scratch and claw their way back to square one.
As the game unfolded, you saw the Steelers’ defense force a punt giving Pittsburgh the ball back at their own 15-yard line, with 3:10 left in the game.
Let’s pause there for a second and go back to the bye week when Steelers quarterbacks coach Randy Fichtner talked about Roethlisberger’s “cape”. To summarize, he mentioned how you are so accustomed to seeing Roethlisberger put the Superman cape on, you don’t realize sometimes he doesn’t have to be that type of player all the time.
Nonetheless, sometimes the team could use less Clark Kent, and some more Superman.
Steelers fans hadn’t seen that Roethlisberger in a while. You know, the Roethlisberger who, when faced with this type of situation in a football game, was almost automatic. The Roethlisberger who was known for his clutch, late-game heroics. The Roethlisberger who emerged from the phone booth to lead the team to victory.
It had been a while, and the way the game had unfolded up to 3:10 left in the game, fans expected overtime, if not the worst possible scenario — a turnover.
- First play: Bell run for 5-yards
- Second play: Bell for 3
- Third Play: Eli Rogers for the first down...
...and then things started to pick up quickly.
- Bell run for 7
- Pass to Bell for 13
- Pass to Martavis Bryant for 19
- Pass to Antonio Brown for 32
Just like that, the Steelers needed just two rushes to set up Chris Boswell on the right hash for the game-winning field goal.
It might not have been the big-play heroics most have grown accustomed to seeing with Roethlisberger, but it was a game-winning drive. It showed Roethlisberger, although looking shaky-at-best most of the game, still has it.
In other words, Roethlisberger can still be “Big Ben”.
It may have been a while since the last “Big Ben” sighting, and even it was only for 3:10 left in the game, it equated to a Steelers’ victory. Their fourth victory in a row, and avoiding getting beaten by a sub-par team on the road — again.
Now, if someone can just remind Roethlisberger, and the offense, where that cape resides more often, things might be a lot smoother down the stretch.