Diagonals Guru: Ben Roethlisberger’s days in Pittsburgh are numbered

Diagonals Guru: Ben Roethlisberger's days in Pittsburgh are numbered

MIAMI – Ben Roethlisberger’s days in Pittsburgh are numbered … or at least they should be.

Choosing when to retire is a very personal decision and I have always supported players who want to continue doing what they love; his career is already too short for the press to be constantly giving him an expiration date.

That said, it’s also sad when the decline of a former star becomes so apparent that it is an inescapable reality.

I’m not one to think that the low end of your career stains your legacy, but it is still a sad image, a reminder that time passes for everyone, except, of course, for Tom Brady.

Even in his best days, pre-snap readings weren’t the main strength of Big Ben, who generally shone at buying time and breaking plays; made such actions a registered trademark.

Now, Roethlisberger has no mobility and Pittsburgh’s offense looks prehistoric.

In two games, the Steelers have accumulated 583 yards and 40 points, of which seven came via special teams after a blocked punt.

To draw a parallel in the same division, the Baltimore Ravens, who also have a 1-1 record, have totaled 887 yards and 63 points in their first two games and they do not have, even close, the most powerful passing attack in the league, but a clear running identity and a magnificent athlete at quarterback.

The identity of Pittsburgh went from constant prayers deep to endless short passes out of necessity, given that the Steelers offensive line has many problems and that, added to a quarterback without mobility, seems to be a cardinal sin.

New offensive coordinator Matt Canada was supposed to add explosiveness to this offense, but the stark reality is they just don’t have the staff to do it.

I love rookie running back Najee Harris and Chase Claypool, Juju Smith-Schuster and Diontae Johnson make an excellent receiver trio, yet all roads lead to Roethlisberger and that bad offensive line.

In my opinion, the Steelers franchise has been paying dearly for the lack of a succession plan for Big Ben. I understand that he is an eminence for the franchise and that one day he will be in the Hall of Fame, but you owe yourself to the present and the future of the team and there they failed.

They spoiled Big Ben too much, even though he’s been flirting with retirement for a couple of years now. To top it off, you inexplicably gave him a two-year, $ 68 million deal to tie your hands even more.

While the contract was later restructured and is essentially in its final year, the Steelers will still have more than $ 10 million in dead money if Big Ben stops playing after this year.

Worse, I doubt the successor is on the current roster, because I doubt Mason Rudolph and Dwayne Haskins are the long-term answer and the Steelers will win enough games not to have a top draft pick. In other words, it will also be difficult for Pittsburgh to find a successor in the next draw. So you had to choose a quarterback in high rounds in past years and develop it in this time.

I’ve always respected the Steelers’ winning DNA, but the signs have long been clear and tell us that their phenomenal defense has masked a myriad of shortcomings, particularly those of their quarterback.

This past week, against the Raiders, Derek Carr looked far superior to Roethlisberger and the defense suffered the injury of Devin Bush, Joe Haden, TJ Watt and Tyson Alualu and could not save them.

I understand that the main goal is to win, but perhaps the most difficult thing is to continue doing it while building for the future and it is always vital that victories do not cloud you from the reality that has hit you in the face for a long time.

Results aside, it’s a no-brainer that Roethlisberger hasn’t done the Steelers any good for a long time.

In an age of explosive offenses, Pittsburgh is the antithesis of that. It is true that you can win in different ways in this league, but it is almost imperative to have someone who makes a difference at crucial moments at quarterback.

It seems incredible to say it, but the offensive identity of the Steelers is an absolute mystery and sooner or later it will end up hurting them.

It is precisely because of this inescapable reality that I want to return to the first Super Bowl that I covered at the court level, precisely between the Steelers and the Cardinals, to remember the best moments of the great Big Ben. Perfect pass to Santonio Holmes to win the XLIII edition in VIDEO OF THE WEEK.

* Home teams are second


As I always say, it is never good to play every game. In other words, there are some that are best missed. Therefore, I decided to add this section, to publicize my six favorite teams with a bet line. Opinions are welcome, since the idea is to add an attribute that is beneficial to readers. The order of the teams is not accidental and the predictions do not affect the total statistics.








There are many of us who are in this type of competition. In this case, the bet line does not matter. Just do not repeat any equipment throughout each week. Of course, these forecasts will not affect the overall statistics either. In parentheses, the teams chosen so far.



At the request of many, we add the landline with a line from Week 11 of 2013.



I have always said that I am not a fan of teasers, since they come from the word tempt and are called “sucker bets”, but, at the request of several of the readers, we added this section. Here, as there are three teams, the line is modified by 6 points, but you must hit all three to collect. Below, I name the three teams with the altered lines in parentheses.

1-ATLANTA FALCONS (+9 and a half)

2-PHILADELPHIA EAGLES (+10 and a half)

3-NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (+9 and a half)


At the request of several of the readers, we include an entry and exit match for each week.

1-ALTAS DE GIANTS-FALCONS (47 and a half)

2-EAGLES-COWBOYS LOWS (52 and a half)

Total statistics (With + Without + Teaser + Additions and Discharges): 45-25

With Bet Line: 19-13 (9-7)

Without Bet Line: 22-10 (12-4)

Surprise of the Week (no line): 2-0 (1-0)

Fixed of the Week (no line): 2-0 (1-0)

Fixed of the Week (with line): 2-0 (1-0)

Power 6 (with line): 7-5 (3-3)

Teaser 3: 1-1 (0-1)

Ups and downs: 3-1 (2-0)

Suicide Pool (no line): 2-0 (SF, CLE)

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