Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is taking part in this year’s Pro Bowl being as the team’s coaching staff is in charge of the AFC team. While he’s a leader on offense, Roethlisberger showed off his defensive skills after Wednesday’s practice when it came to him defending Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin, who has received a lot of criticism from both the media and the team’s fan base following a very quick and disappointing end to the 2017 season that included a Divisional Round home playoff loss to the underdog Jacksonville Jaguars.
During his Wednesday session with the media, Roethlisberger was asked about the notion that Tomlin didn’t have his team disciplined and focused enough ahead of the game against the Jaguars and that instead he let his players get caught up in thinking too much about a possible AFC Championship re-match with the New England Patriots.
“I [don’t] necessarily agree with that,” Roethlisberger told Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com. “I think he knows how to coach us and knows how to coach each individual guy and each position, so I don’t believe in that.
“Anytime you lose, there’s always going to be some comments made. You’ll find anything, people will. I don’t think there’s any truth to that. I think guys were focused and ready to go. We weren’t the best on that day.”
There’s been some speculation lately that Roethlisberger’s current relationship with Tomlin isn’t as good as it once was. On Wednesday, Roethlisberger did his best to dispel the notion that he and his head coach currently have an issues with one another.
“We communicate well with each other,” Roethlisberger said. “We’ve been here for a long time together. I don’t know how many head coaches and quarterbacks have worked together as long together as we have. That just helps when it comes to communicating. When it comes to coaches and plays and anything like that, it’s beneficial.”
I’m sure that Roethlisberger is indeed very happy with Tomlin right now after the head coach decided to move on from offensive coordinator Todd Haley a week ago and replace him with quarterbacks coach Randy Fichtner, who has been on the coaching staff since 2007 and working directly with the quarterbacks since 2010.
After the season ended, Roethlisberger made it clear that he would participate in this year’s Pro Bowl due to the fact that the Steelers coaching staff would be in charge of the AFC team. I think that speaks volumes as the quarterback could have very easily bowed out of the annual All-Star with some sort of injury excuse and especially being that it’s being held in Orlando, FL this year in lieu of Honolulu, Hawaii.