|FBG Mobile Home|
Week 1 vs. TEN
Passing: 33 - 43, 363 yards, 1 TD, 2 INT
Rushing: 1 / 3 / 0
If you took Roethlisberger as your backup QB, congratulations. It looks like the Steelers will have most of their success as an offense through the air, especially in the no huddle. Big Ben had a few shaky trademark Big Ben moments, eating the ball instead of throwing it away and costing the team three points, and being off on his timing to Santonio Holmes early in the game on an out, resulting in an interception. His other interception was on the last play on the half trying to make something happen, one that shouldn't be counted too heavily against him. Roethlisberger was doing his usual Houdini act when under pressure, but mostly, the Steelers much-maligned offensive line gave him a lot of time to calmly survey the field and find open receivers. Roethlisberger showed outstanding accuracy on downfield throws, and finished the game with 12 straight completions. He has one of the better starting WR combos in the league, and he should be a starting quality fantasy QB most weeks as long as the Steelers game plan to their strength on offense.
Week 2 vs. CHI
Passing: 23 - 35, 221 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: 3 / 6 / 1
Make no mistake, Roethlisberger played well enough to win, but he could have played better. Big Ben was outstanding on a game-opening 92-yard TD drive, and he seemed to take well to the Steelers new identity as a pass-first team. He calmly rolled out and converted a play-action fake pass to Matt Spaeth on fourth-and-goal to cap the drive, and then started the team down the field again on the next drive before he threw an INT on a deep ball intended for Mike Wallace because he was hit as he threw. Big Ben wasn't quite the same after that, with some erratic accuracy, some drops by Santonio Holmes, and more blitzes from the Bears. He scored on a two-yard bootleg punctuated by a leap over a would-be tackler in the second half, but that score was set up by a long Rashard Mendenhall run. Roethlisberger did make enough plays to get the Steelers in field goal range twice in the fourth quarter, including a great stretch to get a key first down, but he also took a costly sack that added just enough distance to make Jeff Reed miss the first attempt. In his defense, he threw a TD pass to Santonio Holmes, before the second missed attempt, but Holmes let it go through his hands. A performance that solidifies Roethlisberger's fantasy value, even his rep as a clutch QB, but one that surely must feel empty for him.
Week 3 vs. CIN
Passing: 22 - 31, 276 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: 2 / 3 / 1
Roethlisberger was very effective against Cincinnati. As usual, he was elusive in the pocket and kept plays alive, luring defenders into mistakes so his receivers could take advantage. Long completions to Hines Ward and a touchdown pass to Willie Parker both came on broken plays where Roethlisberger left the pocket and threw off-balance. His long mistake as a passer was critical; a miscommunication with Santonio Holmes resulted in an interception that was returned for a touchdown. Roethlisberger also had his second short yardage touchdown of the year.
Week 4 vs. SD
Passing: 26 - 33, 333 yards, 2 TD, 0 INT
Rushing: 4 / 3 / 0
It was another very effective game this week for Big Ben and the Steelers. He ran the offensive efficiently from the get go and this week was able to lean more heavily on a stout running game and many underneath passes. He showed great poise and pocket awareness as usual and essentially had a near flawless game. Big Ben led his team to TD's on the games 1st two drives with a great mix of passes of varying lengths. The first TD was a short screen pass on 3rd down that Mewelde Moore was able to convert into a TD and the 2nd TD was nice short hookup with Heath Miller. If there is any criticism of Ben from this game, it's that he held onto the ball too long a few times and took a few sacks. These brought a couple of drives to halts where they were otherwise moving the ball very effectively. Through 4 games it is becoming clear that Roethlisberger has raised his game again and looks more like the Roethlisberger from 2006 rather than the 2007/2008 versions.
Week 5 vs. DET
Passing: 23 - 30, 277 yards, 3 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: 4 / -3 / 0
Ben Roethlisberger systematically picked the Detroit Lions apart, finishing yet another contest with a completion rate over 70%. Only one pick six thrown late on an out pass to Mike Wallace kept him from having an outstanding QB rating, but it was still over 120. He was fortunate to have another INT called back due to a roughing the passer penalty, but he also should have had another touchdown to Wallace who dropped what should have been a 71-yard catch and run to the rookie. Roethlisberger found both Santonio Holmes and Hines Ward open well downfield all game, and on the rare occasions where he had to check down it was TE Heath Miller and the two Steeler backs (Mendenhall, Moore) who picked up the slack. Look for Roethlisberger to continue his hot pace next week home against the Browns.
Week 6 vs. CLE
Passing: 23 - 35, 417 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: 6 / 11 / 0
Roethlisberger was very effective eluding pressure from the Browns when needed, but generally had good pass protection. He hit receivers in stride that were often wide open in the middle of the Cleveland zone defense after releasing from spread sets and bunch formations. He was accurate in tight windows, but was intercepted on an overthrown pass over the middle and nearly threw a second interception trying to force the ball into coverage in the end zone while being taken down in the pocket.
Week 7 vs. MIN
Passing: 14 - 26, 175 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
Rushing: 2 / 1 / 0
Roethlisberger was more of a game manager than a QB in this contest. The Vikings applied solid pressure up the middle and from the edge, and Big Ben was never able to get his leading receivers into the game. During the first half, both Hines Ward and Santonio Holmes finished with only one reception. It was only Mike Wallace and Heath Miller that saw any real action for most of the game. While Roethlisberger didn't suffer the same fate that Brett Favre did with the interception and the fumble, he was not without his miss-cues. Several incomplete passes could have been picked off and late in the fourth quarter, he had the ball knocked out of his hands but it was kicked out of bounds before it could be recovered. He finished the game with just 14 completions, for 175 yards and a TD. Not the typical numbers we are used to seeing from Big Ben, but good enough for a tough win.
Week 9 vs. DEN
Passing: 21 - 29, 233 yards, 3 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: 2 / -3 / 0
Big Ben did a good job of attacking the Broncos secondary, but early in this game he was getting harassed by the pass rush. Even working from the shotgun formation Denver was still able to get to Big Ben and bring him down. However, once the ground game got on track in the second half it opened things up for the passing game. Roethlisberger showed his trademark fearlessness when facing the rush, and also was not afraid to go after All-Pro cornerback Champ Bailey. Santonio Holmes caught most of his passes against Bailey, and Roethlisberger kept attacking the secondary. Big Ben has the best pump fake in football, and was able to move the defenders where he wanted which opened up passing lanes all over the field. He was constantly looking for the best mismatch, and often times would pick on Andre Goodman with rookie receiver Mike Wallace. Roethlisberger was also relentless when throwing to Hines Ward, who was matched up against the newly-signed veteran Ty Law. As expected, the Steelers used a no huddle offense to get into a rhythm and that kept the Broncos on their heels in the second half.
Week 10 vs. CIN
Passing: 20 - 40, 174 yards, 0 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: 2 / 16 / 0
Roethlisberger struggled to find a rhythm against a mix of consistent pressure and strong coverage from the Bengals' defense. That combination allowed him to complete only 12 passes to his wide receivers on 29 targets and held him to just a 50% completion rate on the day. Roethlisberger was able to keep plays alive on many occasions, but too often had tunnel vision for one side of the field and missed open receivers coming open in other zones. Many of his passes missed high and at least two were nearly intercepted but dropped.
Week 11 vs. KC
Passing: 32 - 42, 398 yards, 3 TD, 2 INT
Rushing: 1 / 4 / 0
Roethlisberger's first throw was terrible, and nearly intercepted. But after that, he found his groove and put on a clinic throughout the first three quarters, picking apart the KC secondary. He was simply brilliant in the pocket, evading what looked like a sure sack numerous times, and making it look easy --- and was actually more successful improvising and looking for his 3rd or 4th target than he was on the set plays. Late in the game, Roethlisberger got a little greedy: The Chiefs weren't stopping him, and he made a bad throw into the end zone that was easily picked off. On top of that, the KC pass rush finally got to him in the 4th quarter --- to the tune of 3 sacks. Roethlisberger suffered a concussion in OT and left the game.
Week 13 vs. OAK
Passing: 18 - 24, 278 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: 3 / 7 / 0
Roethlisberger made the plays he had to for the Steelers to have a great chance to win the 4th quarter, but his unsuccessful QB sneak on 4th and 1 at the Oakland 5 and red zone interception into double coverage in the first half kept the team from opening what should have been a comfortable halftime lead. Roethlisberger otherwise dissected the Raiders defense, hitting Santonio Holmes on a perfect deep corner route ball in the end zone, finding Holmes again downfield and letting him do the rest to set up TD #2, and hitting Hines Ward on a play action pass to give the Steelers their last lead of the day. Roethlisberger had a big run on a scramble that was called back, but he also had a sure interception dropped in the first half. He didn't show any ill effects from his concussion suffered two weeks ago, and Roethlisberger should be a low-end fantasy QB1 for the playoffs.
Week 14 vs. CLE
Passing: 18 - 32, 201 yards, 0 TD, 0 INT
Rushing: 3 / 10 / 0
Ben Roethlisberger was under constant pressure in Week 14, getting sacked eight times by the Cleveland Browns. While his numbers wound up as reasonable for the night (18-32-201), he failed to throw a touchdown and could have had more production if it were not for the strong winds which limited both his deep throws and long routes by his receivers. With the wind taking away most throws over 20 yards, Cleveland stacked the shorter portion of the field and forced Roethlisberger to either check down or take the sack as the coverage was taking away most 10-20 yard routes.
Week 15 vs. GB
Passing: 29 - 46, 503 yards, 3 TD, 0 INT
Rushing: 1 / 7 / 0
Five hundred yards is a plateau few QBs reach, but Roethlisberger did it against the defense that ranked third against the pass and second overall entering the game. He did it with tremendous downfield accuracy, and he did it by keeping plays alive in the typical Big Ben fashion. He took his share of sacks along the way, but when Roethlisberger had a receiver come open downfield, he always found them. He hit Mike Wallace and Hines Ward on deep balls, used Rashard Mendenhall as an outlet, found Heath Miller downfield, and even hit Santonio Holmes a few times while he was being blanketed by Charles Woodson. On the epic game-winning drive, Roethlisberger converted a fourth down and a third-and-15, and he threw the game-winner on a play eerily reminiscent of the pass that won Super Bowl XLIII, but this time, there were three zeroes on the clock. Roethlisberger was every bit as good as his numbers indicated, and he used all the weapons at his disposal to get to that lofty number.
Week 16 vs. BAL
Passing: 17 - 33, 259 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT
Rushing: 3 / -3 / 0
Ben Roethlisberger practically willed the Steelers to a victory over the visiting Baltimore Ravens in Week 16 as he outplayed his meager statistics. Roethlisberger moved well within and around the pocket to buy time and find targets down field as Baltimore often decided to drop back into coverage with seven or eight defenders, which is not the best plan against Roethlisberger when he's playing well. His 259 passing yards pushed Roethlisberger over 4,000 yards for the season, making him the first Pittsburgh quarterback ever to reach that plateau. With next week's game against the Dolphins now with significant playoff implications and Miami's questionable pass defense, expect Roethlisberger to have a nice game to close the regular season.
Week 17 vs. MIA
Passing: 18 - 27, 220 yards, 3 TD, 0 INT
Rushing: 4 / 17 / 0
Roethlisberger consitently got the ball to his receivers while limiting mistakes. He had pretty good pass protection but also had to deal with good coverage, which meant a lot of short passes to well covered receivers. He took advantage of a couple of mistakes for big gains, but also traded interceptions with Henne late in the second, when he got greedy and threw deep into double coverage for Mendenhall. Overall, it was a good game for Roethlisberger, with three very nice touchdown throws: one deep to Wallace, one short to Holmes, and one to Miller, in the back of the end zone while scrambling. In the fourth quarter, he hurt his right arm but stayed in the game.