Taking a look back at the starting offense of the Pittsburgh Steelers’ Super Bowl XL winning team, revising their careers, and looking at where they’re at today.
QB Ben Roethlisberger
After becoming the youngest quarterback to win a Super Bowl, Roethlisberger went on to win another Super Bowl title following the 2008 season while also becoming the most decorated quarterback in Steelers’ history. No quarterback in franchise history has recorded more wins, passing yards or passing touchdowns than the now 38-year old quarterback. After missing majority of the 2019 season due an elbow injury, Roethlisberger will look to make a big comeback in 2020.
RB Willie Parker
Blink and you might miss it. That can be said for Parker’s 75-yard rushing touchdown in Super Bowl XL, the longest in Super Bowl history and also for his NFL career. A player with immense speed, Parker only knew how to play one way – fast. After rushing for over 1200 yards in three consecutive seasons from 2005-2007, Parker’s wheels began to slow down shortly after and his last NFL carry came in 2009. He briefly signed with the Washington Redskins in 2010 but was cut before the 2010 season began. He then tried his hand at coaching, first as an assistant for the West Virginia Wesleyan College team then as the running back coach for Heritage High School. Parker later retired from coaching as he looks forward to coaching his son in Pop Warner according to The Athletic.
RB Jerome Bettis
The man who got his Cinderella story ending, Bettis retired as a Super Bowl champion in his hometown of Detroit, the site of Super Bowl XL. The Bus is now permanently parked in Canton, Ohio as he was voted into the Hall of Fame in 2015. Bettis’ 13,662 rushing yards currently ranks eighth all time in NFL history.
FB Dan Kreider
A rather unappreciated member of the Super Bowl XL squad, Kreider paved the way for many great running backs such as Willie Parker and Jerome Bettis. Kreider’s tenure in Pittsburgh lasted from 2000-2007 before he made brief stops in St. Louis and Arizona.
WR Hines Ward
Super Bowl XL MVP Hines Ward played the entirety of his 14-year career in the black and gold. While it may not always have been the smoothest ride, Ward finished his career as the franchise leader in receptions (1000), receiving yards (12,083) and receiving touchdowns (85). Following his playing career, Ward tried his hand in coaching, serving as an intern on the Steelers’ staff during the 2017 offseason. He now serves as an offensive assistant for the New York Jets, a position he has held since 2019.
WR Antwaan Randle El
Ward is not the only former Steelers’ receiver who has dabbled in coaching following their playing career. In fact, the man who delivered the game-sealing touchdown pass to Ward in Super Bowl XL, Antwaan Randle El is also currently an offensive assistant in the NFL. Coaching under the staff of Bruce Arians, his former wide receivers’ coach in Pittsburgh, Randle El is currently an offensive assistant for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
TE Heath Miller
Fans at Heinz Field continued to chant Heath at the top of their lungs for another decade following Super Bowl XL. Miller was a consistent part of the Steelers’ offense from 2005 to 2015, serving as Roethlisberger’s security blanket over the middle of the field. His 6569 receiving yards ranks fourth in franchise history and he was also voted Team MVP for his efforts during the 2012 season. Following his retirement after the 2015 season, Miller has enjoyed being a family man while the Steelers continue to search for a long-term answer at the tight end position.
“I’ve really enjoyed spending a lot of time with my family and helping my wife raise our kids. They are active and involved in a lot of stuff, so they keep us busy and keep us engaged. I’ve enjoyed going to their activities or sporting events or whatever they have going on,” Miller told Tim Hayes of the Herald Courier.
LT Marvel Smith
A talented left tackle, Smith was tasked with protecting the blindside of Roethlisberger for the entirety of his career. While he a big part of a dominant offensive line, Smith struggled with injuries towards the end of his career, playing in just 17 games over his final two seasons. The Steelers let him walk following the 2008 season and the former Pro Bowl tackle signed a deal with the San Francisco 49ers. Unfortunately, Smith never suited up for the 49ers as he retired before the 2009 season ever kicked off. He was later inducted in the ASU Hall of Fame in 2011. Like Heath Miller, Smith is also enjoying being a family man since he officially retired from the NFL.
LG Alan Faneca
After a career that saw Faneca earn nine Pro Bowl invites and six First Team All-Pro selections, the Steelers’ left guard retired following the 2010 season. While Faneca will be remembered as a 300-plus pound mauler on the football field, he has made a dramatic change following his retirement. No longer is the former left guard tipping the scale at over 300 pounds. Like many offensive linemen, Faneca has shed some serious mass and even participates in marathon runs. The talented left guard is also in the conversation for the Hall of Fame though he was snubbed earlier this year.
— SportsNation (@SportsNation) February 5, 2014
C Jeff Hartings
Harting only played one more season following the Steelers’ Super Bowl XL victory. A two-time Pro Bowler, Harting is still involved in the game of football though he has moved from the field to the sideline. He is currently the head coach of the Worthington Christian High School football team.
RG Kendall Simmons
Simmons earned another Super Bowl ring with the Steelers as he was also part of the Super Bowl 43 roster, though he viewed that Super Bowl from the sideline. An Achilles injury ended his 2008 season and also his Steelers’ career. Simmons was released shortly after and though he tried to continue playing, with stints in New England and Buffalo, he was unable to beat the injury bug, ending his career officially in 2011 though his last snap came in 2009. A type one diabetic, Simmons also works with the diabetic community, bringing inspiration and advice to those in need.
RT Max Starks
Starks started at right tackle in Super Bowl XL but he eventually transitioned into the team’s long-term option at left tackle. He would hold down the left tackle position from 2008 through 2012 before signing with the then San Diego Chargers in 2013. Starks would be cut before the season’s kickoff and would go on to appear in two games that season for the then St. Louis Rams. Like many other former Steelers, Starks made his final stop in Arizona, signing with the Cardinals but was cut shortly before the 2014 season began. He would retire in early 2015. The former Steelers’ left tackle can still be seen occasionally in the media where he will offer his thoughts and opinions on the current state of the Steelers’ franchise.