The offseason is inevitably a period of projection and speculation, which makes it the ideal time to ponder the hypotheticals that the Pittsburgh Steelers will face over the course of the next year, whether it is addressing free agency, the draft, performance on the field, or some more ephemeral topic.
That is what I will look to address in our Buy or Sell series. In each installment, I will introduce a topic statement and weigh some of the arguments for either buying it (meaning that you agree with it or expect it to be true) or selling it (meaning you disagree with it or expect it to be false).
The range of topics will be intentionally wide, from the general to the specific, from the immediate to that in the far future. And as we all tend to have an opinion on just about everything, I invite you to share your own each morning on the topic statement of the day.
Topic Statement: Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger will participate in some throwing capacity during OTAs.
Explanation: With it seeming as though Ben Roethlisberger is ahead of what was probably a somewhat conservative schedule, having now resumed throwing footballs and having skipped the ‘light throwing’ phase, it’s been reported that he is now perhaps three months or so ‘total clearance’. Around three months from now is when OTAs and mandatory minicamp will be taking place, so if he’s fully cleared, one would assume he should be participating in some capacity.
The timeline syncs up with it happening, and it’s not as though he hasn’t had plenty of time off, so to speak. Roethlisberger has said on a number of occasions that he doesn’t do much throwing during the offseason, especially as the years go on, because he throws so much during the season, but the reality is he’s begun throwing for the first time since around mid-September.
That’s a long layoff, and he’s going to want to be out there. He is already ahead of where they thought he might be, and it’s not as though anybody is going to be tackling him. There are no pads. It’s all air on air. No reason he shouldn’t be able to participate.
We are dealing with three separate questions here, and we’re not even sure of the definite answers to any of them. The most likely ‘yes’ answer is to the question of whether or not Roethlisberger wants to participate in OTAs.
The second question is whether or not he will be able to. We don’t know that yet. He’s literally just begun throwing a football days ago. Reportedly, they will be monitoring his ability to put spin on the ball as the test to measure his recovery from the specific injury he had.
The third question is whether or not he will be allowed to participate. Even if he is ready, willing, and able to participate, that doesn’t mean Mike Tomlin will sign off on it. There’s no rush, really, to get him back on the field in May.