After 18 seasons as the starting quarterback for the Pittsburgh Steelers, future Hall of Famer Ben Roethlisberger called it a career this offseason, leading to major changes at the most important position in sports for the black and gold.
In comes veteran free agent signee Mitch Trubisky and first-round draft pick Kenny Pickett out of the University of Pittsburgh to try and transition the Steelers into a new, competitive era post-Roethlisberger. Those are certainly big shoes to fill, especially in the city of Pittsburgh.
For former Steelers offensive lineman Ramon Foster, who appeared on 93.7 The Fan’s PM Show Tuesday with Andrew Fillipponi and Chris Mueller, it’s a daunting task replacing a legend, no matter who is next in line. Stating to Fillipponi and Mueller, Foster hopes that the two new guys under center for the black and gold know what they’re getting into vying to be the next Steelers’ starting quarterback.
“It should be a really good competition, man. Whoever wins, I hope they understand what they’re getting themselves into,” Foster said to Fillipponi and Mueller, according to audio via 93.7 The Fan. “You’re following a Hall of Fame player, you’re following the city in which the stadium name has changed, and there’s a lot of different changes around this team too. You don’t have the guys on offense that you can just reference and say, ‘Hey, we have him.’
“…Don’t try to be Ben. If you gotta be able to say, you know what, I’m just gonna make the safe throw, then just don’t ruin it and have everybody wishing that they had Ben back because more than anything, that’s probably gonna scar you more than it’s actually gonna help you,” Foster added.
That standpoint from Foster pretty much echoes what Roethlisberger said to Trubisky and Pickett this offseason as the two new faces try and fill the large shoes Roethlisberger leaves behind at the position. Not trying to do too much, being themselves and taking care of the football will go a long way towards playing winning football for the Steelers as currently constructed.
In a sense, the Steelers need a game manager under center for the time being, which is perfectly fine, especially if the Steelers can lean on a rebuilt offensive line, an improved rushing attack and some added playmakers at receiver overall, not to mention one of the league’s best defenses featuring a number of stars.
Though Foster and Roethlisberger have stressed that the new faces just need to be themselves and not worry about being Big Ben, there’s still a ton of pressure present for the new faces. It’s never easy following a legend, especially a quarterback, and certainly in a city and fanbase like Pittsburgh.