It’s been widely reported that there’s a rift between Ben Roethlisberger and Todd Haley, to the point where Haley may not be brought back because of it. But talking with Ron Cook and Andrew Fillipoini on his weekly Tuesday radio spot, Roethlisberger appeared to advocate for keeping Haley. Or at the least, he said the less turnover on the coaching staff there is, the better off he and the team will be.
“The least amount of change, the better,” Roethlisberger told 93.7 The Fan. “That’s from players to coaches to everything. We don’t want to have big changes. Because we’re right there. We’re on the cusp. We feel like we have some great things going for us.”
Roethlisberger painted a different picture of his relationship with Haley, seeming to dispute reporters the two don’t talk and share an icy friendship. He told the show he and Haley had a long conversation yesterday.
“I talked to Coach Haley yesterday. We talked in his office, just him and I, we sat down for awhile and laughed about the season and how proud we both were of how far we came as an offense.”
A Steelers’ offense that certainly underachieved in the first half of the year. But by midseason, they found their groove and averaged nearly 30 points per game over that stretch. And of course, put up 42 points on a great Jacksonville defense in the playoff loss. It was only the second time in franchise history the Steelers scored at least 40 points – in any game – and didn’t walk away victorious.
Roethlisberger wound up having a fantastic season and again, kept his body fresh by taking only 21 sacks. That lack of wear and tear, he said, made for the quick decision to announce his return in 2018, though he denied reports of him telling teammates he’s going to play for three more years.
Mike Tomlin’s press conference is about to take place and hopefully he’ll shed some light on Haley’s situation. His contract is up after the year. But with Mike Munchak perhaps ready to take off for Arizona, and Ben’s comments about keeping the group in place, it now sounds logical for Haley to return.