Ben Roethlisberger has progressed into an elite quarterback over the past several seasons, and while a good portion of his progression should be credited to his attention to detail and hard work, there is something to be said in how Todd Haley’s system has rubbed off on the veteran.
For comparison I’ve included his 2011 stats, one year before Haley, in which he quarterbacked the Bruce Arians offense. Roethlisberger had a great rapport with Arians, and there was growth to be seen in his years with the offensive coordinator, but some of his best statistical performances have come under Haley and it looks like it may continue that way. The breakdown is as follows:
It is clear here that there was some significant improvements as Roethlisberger grew under Haley’s system. Some key elements to take notice of here include his passer rating, touchdown to interception ratio, and completion percentage.
Every single year since 2011, Roethlisberger has become more accurate in that his completion percentage consistently rises with each new season. One could argue that this could be credited to some of the games he has missed, which equals a total of seven with Haley, and that it provides less opportunities for “bad” games, but it’s pretty much all relative at that point.
His passer rating has remained largely consistent throughout the past several years as he has stayed within the 90’s aside from his incredible 2014 season. And one could make the case that if he played in every game last year his touchdowns would have stayed on an increasing path.
However, the number of interceptions can be troubling in some circumstances. The interceptions have become very sporadic throughout the course of his career, so it’s difficult to tell what progression or regression is taking place there. What we do know is that almost every Steelers fan will take the interceptions if it means Roethlisberger is behind center. Still, though, last year proved to bridge the gap in touchdowns to interceptions quite dramatically. It will be nice to see him bounce back and hopefully get the number of picks to under 10.
Roethlisberger’s 2011 season saw him reach 4,000 yards in what was a very productive year. He took a slight step back in his first year under Haley’s scheme, which included 3 missed games, but since then he has continued to improve his yardage total. Missing 4 games last year certainly didn’t help his continual improvement in yards, but I think it’s fair to say if we extrapolated his yards per game throughout the entire season, he would have cleared 5,000 yards setting a career high.
There’s a lot to look forward to if you’re a Steelers fan, as Roethlisberger is looking good so far this offseason and seems to be in great shape, which may help with injury concerns that have popped up in the past. Should he remain healthy (*crosses fingers*), and with his entire offensive line intact (*crossing them again*), he is poised for a 2016 season of career-highs in a number of categories.
It’s quite possible we that we have yet to see the best of Big Ben.