The entire Pittsburgh Steelers fan base was stunned when Ben Roethlisberger talked retirement this offseason. When Tom Brady is talking about playing until he is 40, or more, no one thought Roethlisberger would step away when he would be the captain of arguably the most lethal offense in franchise history.
However, Roethlisberger reportedly was serious about stepping down, but decided to come back for at least one more season, and don’t think his teammates didn’t have a role in his return.
Wide receiver Antonio Brown certainly did his best to get Roethlisberger back in the fold, and rightfully so. Brown just signed a brand-new contract, and he and Roethlisberger have a near sixth sense when it comes to their on-field connection.
Brown admitted to Joe Rutter of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review that he did in fact reach out to his quarterback, but didn’t want to hound him in the offseason.
“A little bit,” Brown said, in reference to if he talked to Roethlisberger. “I was trying to keep him on positive things.”
Brown’s actions might not have been the main catalyst for Roethlisberger’s return, but it certainly couldn’t have hurt. Brown went on to talk about Roethlisberger as a teammate and what he means to the team.
“He's my guy,” Brown said. “I wouldn't want to play with anyone else. Thinking of him leaving is kind of discouraging.”
“Ben is a warrior. He's been through it all, seen it all, done it all,” Brown said. “You never know the motivation is, the drive to keep him going, but I knew if he was going to be out here, he was going to give us everything he's got.
“You see that from him the first couple of days, his intensity, his motivation. He's already been here early, getting signals, the details from the meeting room. I never question his commitment.”
Roethlisberger has publicly stated he is 100-percent committed to the 2017 season, and despite not committing beyond that, the team’s offense is back, intact and ready to go out and do their part in bringing a seventh Lombardi trophy back to the Steel City.