Now that the issue of bounties has come to light in the NFL, stuff that has been going on across the league for years is being seen much differently. Take Ben Roethlisberger’s ankle injury for example. With the Steelers fighting for their playoff lives toward the end of last season, Roethlisberger was forced to play through a significant high ankle sprain. During an appearance on The Dan Patrick Show Wednesday, Big Ben says he felt as though the 49ers were targeting his ankle during a Week 15 loss at San Francisco.
“I don’t really complain about that stuff, either,” Roethlisberger explained. “But I think when we played San Fran, I felt like there were some things going on, some extra. Now, obviously, I did have the ankle and I was playing, so there was kind of a bulls-eye on there anyway. But for the most part, guys play tough and you go into a game expecting it. I expect to be tougher than them.
“Sometimes you get guys — things happen under piles and, you know, the little extra twisting of the ankles and poking, things like that. But this whole bounty thing — I don’t know if I’d sit there and and say, ‘Wow, that guy really tried to end my career.’ Honestly, I don’t know.”
Aiming for a player’s injury and trying to injure a player to knock them out of the game are two entirely different concepts. Roethlisberger is one of the most important pieces of the Steelers offense, so when the team makes it known that he’s hurting any opponent is going to give a little extra roll over on the injured area. That’s part of the game. Paying players to critically injure an opponent is not.
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Tagged with: Ben Roethlisberger • San Francisco 49ers