Ben Roethlisberger and Maurkice Pouncey shared an emotional moment on the bench together after the Pittsburgh Steelers lost to the Cleveland Browns on Sunday night, and we now what was said between the two.
Footage that aired on Showtime’s “Inside the NFL” this week showed an emotional Roethlisberger apologizing to Pouncey. The quarterback told Pouncey “I feel worse for you than me.”
Ben Roethlisberger to Maurkice Pouncey on the bench last night: “You’re the only reason I wanted to do this, man.” pic.twitter.com/LedQsNNFqa
Roethlisberger and Pouncey are both entering the final years of their contracts. Roethlisberger is owed $41.2 million and Pouncey $14.4 million, so the exchange may have been an acknowledgement that the 2020 season could have been one of their last together.
Big Ben has also won two Super Bowls with Pittsburgh, and both came before Pouncey was drafted by the team in 2010. Pouncey is 31 and should have more years left in the NFL than the 38-year-old Roethlisberger, but Ben knows how tough it is to win a championship.
Another angle of Roethlisberger and Pouncey appeared to show that Big Ben was crying. After the way the Steelers started the 2020 season, you can understand why they are so disappointed with the finish.
Both players are entering the final years of their deal. Roethlisberger is owed $41.2 million and Pouncey $14.4 million. Given their contract situations, they are very aware that this might be one of their final years together.
There has been some disagreement among Pittsburgh Steelers players over which name to display on their helmets during games, and team owner Art Rooney II shared some of his thoughts on the situation in a statement this week.
The NFL has given players permission to wear the names or initials of individuals who were victims of racism on their helmets this season. The Steelers chose as a team to use Antwon Rose Jr.’s name. Rose was 17-year-old who was shot and killed by police in East Pittsburgh in 2018. Villanueva replaced Rose’s name on Monday night with that of deceased Army sergeant Alwyn Cashe, an African-American war hero who died in Iraq in 2005 after suffering severe injuries while saving his men from a burning vehicle.
Steelers veteran Maurkice Pouncey revealed in an Instagram post this week that he will also be removing Rose’s name from his helmet. The center said he was given “limited information” on Rose’s case and that he should have done more to understand the situation. He also said his focus is on improving the relationship between police officers and their communities.
Rose was pulled over because his car matched the description of a vehicle involved in a drive-by shooting earlier that night. Another teen who was in the vehicle, Zaijuan Hester, pleaded guilty to being the shooter. The officer who shot Rose was charged with homicide but acquitted after trial.
Rooney issued a statement on Thursday addressing the back-and-forth over the helmet decals. He said the team supports the right of all players to express their individual beliefs.
“As an organization, we respect the decisions of each player, coach and staff member relating to how to express themselves on social justice topics,” Rooney wrote. “We will continue to support our social initiatives to fight against social injustice and systemic racism not only in our area, but around the country.”
The NFL and NFL Players Association are moving closer to agreeing upon a new collective bargaining agreement, but Maurkice Pouncey feels very strongly about the union not signing off on the current proposal.
The NFLPA voted early Wednesday morning to submit the latest CBA proposal for approval, meaning the players will now vote on whether or not they want it implemented. Pouncey feels the CBA would be horrible for the players, and the Pittsburgh Steelers center went off about the proposal in a profanity-laced rant on Instagram live. Beware that the video below contains inappropriate language:
Maurkice Pouncey is strongly against the CBA. He posted this (NSFW) a couple hours ago:
“I vote no. Our NFLPA, the dudes at the top, the leaders, that’s f’ing bs. F that. They’re not looking out for the best of the players. If y’all want my vote, the Pouncey twins vote no.” pic.twitter.com/hp4AqlG7Qu
Pouncey also said that he and his twin brother, Los Angeles Chargers center Mike Pouncey, have plenty of money and are willing to make loans to their fellow players if there is a lockout. The current CBA does not expire until after the 2020 season, so there is still a long way to go before a lockout would be necessary.
With the NFLPA having submitted the proposed CBA to the players for approval, all it would take is a simple majority vote for it to be ratified. That means more than half of the roughly 2,000 players in the league would need to approve it. The approval does not have to be unanimous.
Pouncey’s teammate, Steelers offensive lineman Ramon Foster, appeared to disagree with Pouncey that the proposed CBA is a terrible deal for the players. Foster is a player rep, and he sent a series of tweets about people sharing opinions on the CBA when they are not fully informed. He also took a veiled swipe at players who are now concerned about the CBA after not attending meetings for the past several years.
Make sure they actually know the details first. I know I gave y’all all the info I had. Some just go off hearsay and twitter CBA experts. But what do I know https://t.co/g571Mh3AUh
Say this louder for the folks who don’t come to rep meetings. This discussion of the deal has been in place for years. We’ve withheld our royalty checks for years prepping for this. Oh now it’s important. Stay Woke people. Say I’m lying? https://t.co/uy9Fx7vdje
I’m in favor of being fully informed before I say something. Why hate a person when you have never met a person? I’m sure your parents told you that right? Same thing, get educated before you speak. https://t.co/UJ6tmpslCy
Pouncey did not list specific reasons why he is furious over the CBA proposal, but players have had concerns about expanding to a 17-game season, the offseason schedule and other aspects of the agreement.
Le’Veon Bell sat out the entire 2018 season due to a contract dispute with the Pittsburgh Steelers, but one of his former teammates insists that did not result in the star running back having a strained relationship with him or other members of the team.
With the Steelers traveling to New York to face the Jets this weekend, veteran center Maurkice Pouncey was asked how Bell will be received by his former teammates. Pouncey said it will be all love.
#Steelers C Maurkice Pouncey on seeing former teammate and current #Jets RB Le’Veon Bell Sunday: “I guarantee you there will be 50 guys hugging him.”
Players know the NFL is a business, so perhaps many of Bell’s former teammates have a better understanding of his situation now. Still, it’s hard to believe there is no one in the Pittsburgh locker room who is bitter toward him over the way things transpired.
The Pittsburgh Steelers got their revenge on the Cleveland Browns in Week 13, and they celebrated it in a particularly appropriate way.
After Sunday’s 20-13 victory over the Browns, the Steelers presented the game ball to none other than center Maurkice Pouncey, per Diana Russini of ESPN.
Pouncey was suspended two games for his role in the ugly brawl involving Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph and Browns defensive end Myles Garrett that went down the last time these two played. He did not suit up on Sunday as he served the second game of his suspension.
Myles Garrett met with the NFL this week to appeal his indefinite suspension, but the Cleveland Browns star did not have any luck. Pittsburgh Steelers center Maurkice Pouncey, however, had his suspension reduced.
Garrett’s suspension, which will last through at least the remainder of the regular season and playoffs if the Browns make it that far, has been upheld. Pouncey’s had been cut from three games to two.
Maurkice Pouncey’s suspension has been reduced from 3 games to 2 games.
Myles Garrett’s indefinite suspension has been upheld.
Pouncey’s suspension stems from him throwing punches at Garrett and kicking him while he was on the ground after Garrett hit Rudolph in the head with a helmet. Steelers fans have offered to pay Pouncey’s fine since he was defending his quarterback.
Maurkice Pouncey was among those ejected for his role in a fight at the end of Thursday night’s Pittsburgh Steelers-Cleveland Browns game, and Steelers fans already have his back.
Mason Rudolph was taken down by Myles Garrett on a third-and-long pass in the final minute, and the two began scrapping on the ground. Garrett ripped off Rudolph’s helmet and later used it as a weapon to bash the quarterback in the head. Pouncey, the Steelers’ center, saw right in front of him what Garrett did and went after the Browns defensive star immediately.
Pouncey ended up throwing some punches and kicks at Garrett after seeing the way he bashed Rudolph in the head.
Some may feel discipline for Pouncey is called for, but I have no problem at all with what he did. He saw his quarterback viciously harmed and went in to protect and defend his teammate right away. That’s the kind of teammate you want protecting your quarterback.
Ben Roethlisberger has come under fire this offseason thanks to some of the things Le’Veon Bell and Antonio Brown have said about him on their way out of Pittsburgh, but Maurkice Pouncey wants to make it clear that not everyone who played with the quarterback feels that way.
“I’ve been with Ben going on 10yr I swear on my kids he is a true LEADER!! sucks to see players who leave and are mad at the organization now try and point fingers like they are perfect! But this is the world we live in now!” Pouncey wrote.
Pouncey is not the first member of the Steelers organization to stand behind Roethlisberger this offseason, and you have to take anything Brown and Bell say with a grain of salt. They clearly had several strained relationships in Pittsburgh, even if their issues with Big Ben have attracted the most attention.
Pouncey signed a 5-year, $44.1 million contract with Pittsburgh in 2014 and was due to make $7 million this season. He is considered a leader on the Steelers and has missed just two games over the past three seasons.
The 29-year-old missed all of the 2015 season due to a bad leg injury but has proven to be healthy and valuable since.