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Ben Roethlisberger Must Play Better If the Pittsburgh Steelers are to Bounce Back

October 6th, 2013 at 9:53 PM
By Mark Mihalko

With Week 5 of the NFL season nearly complete, it is almost time for the Pittsburgh Steelers to start their preps for their Week 6 match-up against the New York Jets. With that game being a week away, there is a lot of work to do. Of course, if they want to start rebounding from their 0-4 start, they have no choice but getting it done.

'2012-12-09 12.14.28' photo (c) 2012, The Football Juice - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/
While many in Pittsburgh will be celebrating the Pittsburgh Pirates 5-3 victory in game three of the NLDS, others will start paying attention to what changes the Steelers may have in store for the week. At this point, the biggest personnel change may come along the offensive line; however, it may be more important for some changes to come on the mental side of the game.

In looking at the Steelers, improvements need to be made on both offense and defense, and more importantly, some players must play better. One of the players who must step up his game is quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, who incredibly has received a pass from a majority of fans to this point in 2013.

Yes, the running game has been miserable, and the offensive line worse, but Roethlisberger must play better. Weeks ago, Steelers 101 pointed out his early season struggles, which is some ways cost the Steelers chances at victories. Between botched timeouts, fumbles and interceptions, one could make the case that he cost the team at least two victories at this point in 2013. Sure, the line and running game have struggled, but it is not as if Roethlisberger has never dealt with those issues before in his Steelers career. In fact, he used to thrive in situations in the past behind units that were arguably worse than the units starting in Pittsburgh today.

What makes this even more disturbing is the fact that there are little signs pointing to a change in his play at critical moments. He has demonstrated this over the past two games by committing a turnover with a chance to draw the game even or take the lead in the fourth quarter. Sure, some will again point to the offensive line or the defense, and yes, they are also culpable, but there is still no excuse for the leader of the offense to make these bad plays with the game on the line.

Fans should think about this, in seasons past, Roethlisberger would have made defenses pay for blitzing with the game on the line. Today, the opposition is licking their chops, waiting for what has become the weekly quarterback miscue. If the Steelers are going to climb out of this hole, their franchise quarterback will need to regain edge that lifted him into elite status. If he does not find that player, the Steelers might as well start preparing for the draft, as their season is over.

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Tags: Ben Roethlisberger, Football, NFL, Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh Pirates, Pittsburgh Steelers

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