Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger threw for only 215 yards and had two interceptions in Sunday’s loss to the Baltimore Ravens. While he only failed to complete 10 pass attempts in that game, he certainly didn’t appear to be his normal self and that very well could have been a result of him not getting into a passing rhythm early in the contest due to the run-focused game plan that the offense chose to open up with. On Tuesday during his weekly press conference, head coach Mike Tomlin didn’t totally dismiss the possibility of that.
“There’s a potential for that,” said Tomlin. “I think there’s always a potential for that when you don’t find the type rhythm that you need and particularly at the latter stages of the game to win. Like I mentioned, we had the ball and time and we didn’t deliver and we’ve gotten quite comfortable in delivering in those instances. That’s potentially an element of it, but more than anything, I thought we ran out of time. We ran out of time because we turned the ball over and lost a couple of possessions and our inability to get off the field consistently on defense created an environment where time was a big-time factor in the second half of the game.”
In the first half against the Ravens, the Steelers ran the football 14 times for 94 yards and while impressive, Roethlisberger only attempted two pass attempts in the opening quarter. While he didn’t blame the multiple running plays early on in the game as a reason why the offense struggled against the Ravens through the air, the Steelers quarterback did admit Tuesday during an interview on 93.7 The Fan that his unit failed to get into sync during the 60 minutes of play.
“They’re a good defense,” Roethlisberger said. “Playing at their place, and you know, we just never got into a rhythm. You’re going to have those days where you have an off day or a bad day. It wasn’t my best day. It wasn’t the offense’s best day and those things are going to happen. It’s just unfortunate we weren’t able to find a way to win the game. We just didn’t have the ball that much early and when we did have it, we didn’t take advantage .”
Several have speculated that Roethlisberger may have been under the weather on Sunday and while we don’t know for sure if that is indeed true, he reportedly went home sick Wednesday morning.
Regardless of what the reason was, the Steelers still lost a game that they should’ve probably won by double-digits and as a result they will need to rebound this coming Sunday against the Cleveland Browns and hope the Buffalo Bills beat the New York Jets in order to make the playoffs. If both of those things fail to happen, the Steelers will have all offseason to try to figure out why Roethlisberger played so poorly against the Ravens and why the team continues to struggle to beat team with sub-.500 records under Tomlin.