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Sunday, December 15, 2019

Ben Roethlisberger

Report: Ben Roethlisberger ‘livid’ after being fined for wearing Apple Watch on sideline

Ben Roethlisberger

Ben Roethlisberger returned to the sideline for the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 4 to help the team in the wake of his elbow surgery, and he managed to get himself fined for a uniform violation despite not being in uniform.

Roethlisberger was fined $5,000 for wearing an Apple Watch on the sideline during Monday night’s game against the Cincinnati Bengals, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports. NFL rules prohibit players and coaches from wearing electronic devices that can transmit messages, but Roethlisberger is “livid” that he was fined and is planning to appeal.

Here’s the best part: Roethlisberger supposedly didn’t even realize he had the watch on. His wife helped dress him since he is currently unable to use his right arm, and she strapped the watch to his wrist. The veteran quarterback feels he should have been given advanced notice from the NFL before receiving a fine letter.

Players wearing watches has become a big topic of conversation this season with Odell Beckham Jr. choosing to wear this impressive timepiece during a recent game. However, the issue with Roethlisberger’s watch is that it was one capable of sending and receiving messages. You can understand why those aren’t allowed on the sideline.

Ben Roethlisberger underwent elbow surgery on Monday

Ben Roethlisberger

Ben Roethlisberger has taken the first step towards being ready for the 2020 season.

The Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback underwent elbow surgery on Monday, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter. This had been expected since last week.

The Steelers announced a week ago that Big Ben would undergo season-ending elbow surgery after an MRI revealed the need for it. There were questions about whether he would need Tommy John surgery, which requires a lengthy rehab period. Schefter reported on Sunday that Roethlisberger did not need that procedure.

The surgery was performed in Los Angeles by Dr. Neal ElAttrache, one of the most renowned sports surgeons in the country, one who specializes in elbow and Tommy John surgeries.

”Once Ben returns to Pittsburgh, he immediately will begin working with the Steelers’ medical staff on his rehabilitation, and he is expected to make a full recovery and return to the field for the 2020 NFL season,” the Steelers said in a statement via Schefter.

The Steelers have begun the season 0-3, traded away their first-round pick for next year, and reportedly believe in Mason Rudolph as Roethlisberger’s successor. Best of luck to them.

Steelers reportedly view Mason Rudolph as successor to Ben Roethlisberger

Mason Rudolph

The Pittsburgh Steelers will likely welcome Ben Roethlisberger back with the team for as long as he wants to play, but the quarterback currently starting in Big Ben’s place is the one they envision under center in the future.

The Steelers view Mason Rudolph as their successor to Roethlisberger, Ian Rapoport of NFL Media reported on Sunday. Pittsburgh used a third-round pick on Rudolph in the draft last year, but they actually had a first-round grade on him. According to Rapoport, their confidence in Rudolph is one of the reasons they did not hesitate to trade a first-round pick for star defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick.

Rudolph’s performance through two games this season has been mixed. He completed just 14-of-27 passes for 174 yards, two touchdowns and an interception in a 24-20 loss to the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday, but obviously the sample size is very limited to this point.

There had been talk that Roethlisberger could retire in the wake of his season-ending elbow injury, but the 37-year-old was quick to throw cold water on that. However, if the Steelers aren’t going to make the playoffs this year and they truly believe Rudolph is their quarterback of the future, they are probably viewing this as a valuable opportunity for the 24-year-old to develop.

Report: Ben Roethlisberger does not need Tommy John surgery, will be ‘fine’ for 2020

Ben Roethlisberger

Ben Roethlisberger is expected to undergo season-ending surgery to repair an elbow injury at some point in the coming week, but the procedure he is scheduled to have is not Tommy John surgery.

Roethlisberger does not need Tommy John surgery and has no concerns about being ready to play in 2020, a source told ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

“There is complete optimism that he will be ready to roll next season,” Schefter’s source said. “No one is concerned that next year is going to be a problem.”

The exact nature of Roethlisberger’s elbow injury is still unknown, but Tommy John surgery typically requires a lengthy rehab and recovery period. Former Carolina Panthers quarterback Jake Delhomme had the procedure on his throwing elbow in 2007 and led the team to a 12-4 record the following year, but avoiding it is still a better outcome for Roethlisberger.

There was speculation that Roethlisberger could retire after it was announced that he will miss the rest of 2019, but the 37-year-old immediately threw cold water on that. He signed a two-year extension with the Steelers this offseason and said he plans to honor the contract.

Antonio Brown takes aim at Ben Roethlisberger again while ripping double standard

Ben Roethlisberger

Antonio Brown went scorched earth on Twitter early Sunday morning, and you won’t be surprised to hear that Ben Roethlisberger’s name made its way into the star receiver’s latest social media tirade.

Brown kicked off his rant by saying he is not going to play in the NFL anymore and criticizing the Oakland Raiders and New England Patriots for withholding his bonus money. He then took a shot at Patriots owner Robert Kraft for releasing him over sexual assault allegations after Kraft was charged in a prostitution sting at a massage parlor earlier this year. Brown wasn’t done there.

In an attempt to prove a point about there being a double standard with the NFL, Brown brought up two other noteworthy sexual assault scandals. One involved the allegations against his former teammate, Ben Roethlisberger, and the other was Shannon Sharpe’s case.

The point Brown seems to be missing is that he was not released or disciplined by the NFL over the sexual assault lawsuit that was filed against him. The Patriots decided to cut him after he sent harassing and intimidating text messages to the most recent woman who accused him of sexual misconduct. Both the Patriots and NFL seemed willing to let Brown share his side of things in the case with his former trainer, Britney Taylor. However, the text messages were likely the final straw. Had Brown not sent those, he would probably be suiting up for the Patriots on Sunday.

As for Roethlisberger, it’s no secret Brown and the quarterback did not get along toward the end of their time together with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Brown has unloaded on Big Ben numerous times in the past year, and this is just the latest.

Tommy John of surgery fame offers words to Ben Roethlisberger

Ben Roethlisberger

Ben Roethlisberger is expected to undergo elbow surgery at some point in the near future, and someone who knows plenty about that is former MLB pitcher Tommy John. While the exact nature of the procedure Roethlisberger will have is unclear, John has offered some words of encouragement for the Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback.

John, of course, is the player after whom the all-too-popular Tommy John surgery was named. On Tuesday, John wished Roethlisberger well with his rehab and told him to reach out if he needs anything along the way.

For obvious reasons, Tommy John surgery is not nearly as common with football players as it is with baseball players. However, former Carolina Panthers quarterback Jake Delhomme is probably the best Tommy John surgery story there is in the NFL, as he had the procedure on his throwing elbow in 2007 and led the team to a 12-4 record and a division title the following year.

“My arm felt better than it did in years after the surgery,” Delhomme told Mark Kaboly of The Athletic this week. “I felt relief immediately. The day I tore it is the day I felt relief. It would hurt for me to brush my teeth, wash my face, shake hands with anybody. Once it tore, I remember telling the trainer and the doctor that I slept great. I didn’t have that pain, and my arm didn’t kill me.”

Ian Rapoport of NFL Media reported on Tuesday that Roethlisberger is expected to have a procedure other than Tommy John surgery and the recovery time will be much quicker. The Steelers have yet to confirm that.

Either way, the 37-year-old Roethlisberger has thrown cold water on any talk that we have seen the last of him in the NFL. He seems intent on leading the Steelers again in 2020, and Delhomme’s case is proof that it can be done at a high level.

Ben Roethlisberger shoots down retirement talk in wake of elbow injury

Ben Roethlisberger

Ben Roethlisberger will miss the remainder of the 2019 season because of an elbow injury that will require surgery, and there has been a lot of speculation that the 37-year-old could retire. Roethlisberger has put that talk to rest.

In a statement he released on Monday afternoon, Roethlisberger called his season-ending surgery “shocking and heartbreaking” but said it will not spell the end of his career.

“I can only trust God’s plan, but I am completely determined to battle through this challenge and come back stronger than ever next season,” Roethlisberger said. “The Steelers committed three years to me this offseason and I fully intend to honor my contract and reward them with championship level play. I will do all I can to support Mason (Rudolph) and the team this season to help win games. I love this game, my teammates, the Steelers organization and fans, and I feel in my heart I have a lot left to give.”

Roethlisberger is facing a difficult rehab and will be 38 by the time he is cleared to play again. He has openly contemplated retirement in the past, so it would not have been a surprise if he called it a career after suffering such a significant injury.

With Antonio Brown and Le’Veon Bell having left Pittsburgh this offseason, the Steelers were trying to find a new identity on offense. They may have to wait another year to do that, especially if Roethlisberger plans to keep playing.

Deion Sanders recently made some predictions about Roethlisberger’s 2019 season, and one of them unfortunately came true. However, Steelers fans will be happy to know Big Ben is not planning to call it quits.