Last week, the Steelers took Oklahoma State quarterback Mason Rudolph in the third round, and they seemed convinced the draft’s sixth-ranked passer is their guy for the future. Starting QB Ben Roethlisberger, who is just the biggest fucking baby and rarely wanted to plan beyond the upcoming season when Landry Jones was his backup, has suddenly been rattled into long-term commitment.
Roethlisberger talked with the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Tuesday, giving Rudolph his blessing as a successor but also committing for another three to five years, through what I’d imagine were gritted teeth:
“Well, that’s fine. He can do that,” Roethlisberger told the Post-Gazette on Tuesday about the rookie someday taking over as the Steelers starting quarterback. “But I plan on playing for three to five more years, depending on how the line goes and staying healthy, if I can stay healthy.”
“If he’s going to be their guy, that’s great, but in my perfect world it’s not going to be for a while.”
This comes almost exactly one year after Roethlisberger toyed with the Steelers about whether he’d even play beyond the 2017 season. He told the Post-Gazette last May, after ominously teasing retirement earlier that year:
I never commit to anyone more than one year...That’s how we always commit to this sport. If we look past this year we’re cheating ourselves and we’re cheating other people. We have to give this year everything we have because ultimately what we have is right here and right now.
And here’s what he told 93.7 The Fan that originally raised doubts about his NFL future:
“I’m gonna take this offseason to evaluate, to consider all options, to consider health and family and things like that and just kind of take some time away to evaluate next season — if there’s gonna be a next season,” Roethlisberger said during his weekly interview with 93.7 The Fan’s Ron Cook and Andrew Fillipponi.
What a difference one quarterback makes.