The Pittsburgh Steelers, and by proxy their fans, have been blessed since 2004. When the team drafted Ben Roethlsiberger with the 11th overall pick in the first round, it completely altered the trajectory of the franchise.
Roethlisberger has orchestrated some tremendous comebacks, huge statistical games, been to three Super Bowls and won two of them. An illustrious career indeed, but how he plays the game each week is something worth noting — especially on “money downs.”
Money downs are those where you earn your money — in the red-zone, with the game on the line and, especially, on third downs. While Roethlisberger might hold onto the ball a bit too long at times, throughout his career he’s been great on third-down conversions.
Check out the stats below from Scott Kacsmar, of Football Outsiders:
Highest 3rd down conversion rate on throws since 2001— Scott Kacsmar (@FO_ScottKacsmar) May 17, 2018
1. Ben Roethlisberger 46.6%
2. Peyton Manning 46.4%
3. Matt Ryan 45.6%
4. Drew Brees 45.6%
5. Jameis Winston 45.5%
6. Aaron Rodgers 45.5%
7. Tony Romo 45.1%
8. Philip Rivers 45.0%
9. Tom Brady 44.0%@fbgchase
While this data goes back to 2001, when Roethlisberger was still slinging the ball for Miami of Ohio, it doesn’t change the fact he’s listed among the best when you’re talking about Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers.
Chalk this up as just another reason why the Steelers have been so fortunate to have Roethlisberger at the helm for all these years. With Roethlisberger entering his 15th year in the NFL, and the team drafting Mason Rudolph in the 2018 NFL Draft, many are wondering, and worrying, about the future of the position. May I suggest simply enjoying Roethlisberger while he’s still under center and playing well. After all, the future will take care of itself — and I have a feeling No. 7 has at least one more championship up his sleeve before calling it quits.