PITTSBURGH (93.7 the Fan) – Talking for the first time with local reporters since the elbow injury in 2019, quarterback Ben Roethlisberger made it clear he didn’t think about retiring for long and is ready for more years leading the Steelers.
“I still have a lot to give this team,” Roethlisberger said Tuesday. “I still have a lot to give the fans. And I still want to win Lombardis. And I say that with a plural at the end.”
Roethlisberger said the arm felt good today after throwing a lot at camp at Heinz Field on Monday. The 17-year veteran said he’s been throwing two to three days a week for the last couple of months and will be on a bit of a ‘pitch count’ during camp.
Although that is not much different as Roethlisberger has taken days off during training camp and the regular season over the last few years to save his arm.
“I’ve had no setbacks,” Roethlisberger said. “It feels really, really good. I’m really excited about that.”
Part of the reason is not just the doctor’s ability to re-attach three torn flexor tendons to his arm, but that Roethlisberger believes he’s coming in at a lighter weight than he has in 13 or 14 years.
While he normally wouldn’t start getting into shape for a season until Spring, due to only playing two games last year, Roethlisberger started getting in shape in the late Fall and kept working throughout the off-season.
“I feel really good,” the 38-year-old quarterback said. “I feel strong. I feel healthy. I feel young, if you can feel young at this age still. I’m just really excited about the season and the group of guys that we have here.”
Whether it’s where he was drafted or coming back from injury, Roethlisberger has always seemed to have incentives for wanting to show people they are wrong. This is no different.
“Any athlete, any competitor will tell you they want to go out on their own terms,” Roethlisberger said. “It doesn’t happen all of the time. We don’t always get lucky whether it’s trades, cuts, injuries, whatever it is. I think if I felt like I was close to the end, it might have been more of a decision for me to think longer about coming back or not. I didn’t feel like I was close to that yet.”
“I’m not saying I’ve got 10 years left in me, but I definitely feel like I have some good years left in me. That was definitely a motivating factor was coming back and showing that I have it in the tank.”