Post Gazette columnist Ron Cook recently got the ear of Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger in regards to the team's MVP vote - which is expected to come today, and has become perhaps the most anticipated team MVP announcement in a long time.
It shouldn't be any more intriguing for Roethlisberger, who's one of several worthy candidates on this year's team. It's the same thing every year, according to Ben.
As he told Cook, "I vote for Heath Miller every year."
Simple enough. It isn't just a rubber stamp he can apply to something about which he has little concern. Roethlisberger would explain to Cook, in what comes off as an amusing anecdote for as truthful as Roethlisberger intends it to be, "He never complains about a thing. We’re pulling him in his 10th year against Tamba Hali and these other linebackers and (Terrell) Suggs, and you never hear a thing from him … I’ll be like, ‘Heath, were you open on that play?’ He’ll go, ‘Ah, it was close.’ Then, I’ll look at the picture, and there was no one around him."
Miller is a worthy candidate, as is Roethlisberger himself. Ben has thrown for a career and franchise-high 384 completions for a career and franchise-record 4,635 yards. With one game to go this season, he's got the 5,000 yard mark still within his sights. Not that such things matter a whole lot to Roethlisberger, who may end up getting some attention for the league's MVP award as well. He's voting for Miller anyway.
He said he also votes for Miller for team captain every year too.
Miller was voted the team's MVP in 2012, his finest statistical season (71 catches, 816 yards, eight touchdowns). He can equal those totals with an eight-catch, 96 yard performance against the Bengals Sunday. That seems a bit lofty of an expectation for his production, but all it means is Miller is coming very close to a career year in his own right. Catching 63 passes and 720 yards this season is excellent for Miller, and he'll still play one more game.
The Steelers' MVP is expected to be announced at some point Tuesday.