bill-swift - September 8, 2012
A couple of seasons ago one of the most hated players in the NFL was Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. The sexual assault scandal stemming from a night out in Milledgeville, Georgia, (and the Lake Tahoe incident) brought to light a lot of serious character flaws in the young quarterback. Stories began to come out about Roethlisberger acting like an arrogant, cocky, self-absorbed--well, you get the picture.
Big Ben has been working to clean up his image ever since. If you don't think he has quite done enough to prove he wants to be a better person, his recent comments about his impending parenthood might do the trick for you.
Back in June he announced that he and his wife of just under a year were having a baby. He has declined to say when except that he (they are having a boy) is due to come sometime in the fall. If you are a Steelers fan and that set of alarm sounds in your head you have reason to worry:
I'm not missing the birth of my child. There's no chance. I know some fans probably don't want to hear that, but there's no chance.
While no starter is easily replaceable, losing your quarterback is a game changer, especially when your back ups are Byron Leftwich and Charlie Batch (sorry guys; you're past your prime). As much as we might like to think that the world is a bit more forgiving and respectful of the private lives of celebrities (yes, I typed that with a straight face), there will inevitably be some that are not too happy with this decision.
That is likely why the couple has not said when their baby is due.
It is not as if players haven't missed games before because their wives go into labor. Houston Oilers tackle David Williams did back in 1993, but the move was blasted by the team and cost him a game check.For Big Ben a game check is no small thing!
For a guy that was once accused of doing some pretty bad things it's nice to see that he appears to have gotten his priorities in line. Good for you Ben; not so good for your fantasy owners, but good for you.