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Steelers OTAs Recap Day 9: Ben Roethlisberger returns and offers explanation for absence

Time to get you squared away as the Steelers wrap up their third week of Organized Team Activities (OTAs).

NFL: Pittsburgh Steelers Training Camp Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The Pittsburgh Steelers have almost completed their Organized Team Activities (OTAs), and there was a ton of news coming from the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex on Wednesday. First, Ryan Shazier addressed the media for the first time since injuring his back last December in Cincinnati.

Shazier seems to be in tremendous spirits, is walking with a cane and still aims to return to the football field he once called home. And no, he isn’t scared about potentially returning to the field.

While Shazier was wrapping up his media session, Steelers players were hitting the gridiron for the ninth time. A familiar face was back, as Ben Roethlisberger returned for the first time since the team’s first OTA session weeks ago.

Many fans, and media, speculated why and where Roethlisberger was during the past few weeks, and the man fans call “Big Ben” responded to these inquiries.

For those who would rather hear it from Roethlisberger himself, here he is talking to the media about why he wasn’t in attendance.

Personally, I’m okay with Roethlisberger missing OTAs for multiple reasons. As he mentioned, it mainly gave Joshua Dobbs and Mason Rudolph a lot more repetitions, which they need — and wouldn’t get — if Roethlisberger were present. Also, the risk of injury simply isn’t worth it in my opinion. Roethlisberger spoke about how the offense hasn’t changed much, either in scheme or personnel, so him missing wasn’t a huge deal.

While plenty will still be talking about the absence of Le’Veon Bell and Antonio Brown, they should find solace in the fact Mike Tomlin certainly knows and understands where his players are during these voluntary workouts.

For those who are curious, the Steelers’ final OTA will be Thursday, June 7th, and the mandatory minicamp will begin on June 12th at the team’s facility.

Stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes regarding the Black-and-gold as they head into more offseason workouts and prepare for the 2018 regular season.