If there was any truth to the notion Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is incapable of putting him big-time numbers like his more statistically decorated peers in the NFL, they were put to rest in 2014.
It won't result in any more individual accolades than it usually does; despite having a share of the passing title, Roethlisberger won't sniff the MVP award, and he was already left off the All Pro teams. Roethlisberger usually gives - publicly at least - a giant "pshhaw" to such achievements with a statement on his concentration on winning over individual awards. Roethlisberger has been the team's starting quarterback since Week 3 of the 2004 season and no Steelers team has finished below .500, and, after throwing for 4,954 yards, led the Steelers to their fifth AFC North title in his 11 years at the helm.
Roethlisberger, according to Tribune Review reporter Mark Kaboly, is fourth among active quarterbacks with 116 career wins, and his two Super Bowl rings are outdone only by Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (three). Giants QB Eli Manning also has two rings.
Steelers quarterbacks coach Randy Fichtner hasn't been with the club in his current position for that long (he was the team's wide receivers coach from 2007-10 before taking over the quarterbacks coach job), but certainly long enough to have seen Roethlisberger at his professional best.
"I am around him every day and see the special things he does," Fichtner said, as quoted by Kaboly. "To me, he is a Hall of Famer, and you don't see those very often."
Roethlisberger is likely to sign a contract extension this offseason, and it seems reasonable his deal will be around what the Saints gave QB Drew Brees - $37 million signing bonus and $40 million guaranteed on a five-year, $100 million total value contract. Capologists may digest the numbers differently, but however it gets sliced and diced, that's simply the market rate for a quarterback who possesses that much value for a franchise.
Certainly one who's own position coach goes out of his way to declare him a Hall of Fame player.