Ben Roethlisberger remains the great unknown heading into the 2020 NFL season. Big Ben missed virtually the entire 2019 season. With most injuries, you can sort of look past it and expect someone to make a full recovery. This one is much different. Does Ben Roethlisberger have anything left? I think it’s a fair question to ask.
I can’t believe the Steelers are willing to take this risk without bringing in a better back up option. It’s why I advocated for Pittsburgh to sign Cam Newton. This isn’t just a normal injury Ben Roethlisberger suffered last year. This was a baseball injury. Roethlisberger had elbow surgery that usually takes 12-15 months to recover.
There are two ways to look at this. I’m not sure which one is correct and nor do you.
A: Big Ben has had pain in his elbow for years and he finally got it taken care of. We should expect a very good Roethlisberger in 2020.
B: He’s not nearly ready to come back. Ben is rusty and just flat out doesn’t have it.
Roethlisberger, 38, is no spring chicken. He was drafted in the same draft class where Eli Manning has called it quits and Philip Rivers looks like this is his last stand. We really don’t know what version of Roethlisberger we’re getting.
From a fantasy perspective, it doesn’t feel like the juice is worth the squeeze. The Steelers defense is quietly very good. This team doesn’t have to win shootouts. They can win games with the run game and defense. This isn’t the old Steelers running up and down the field with Antonio Brown and Lev Bell. On the flip side, the weapons actually aren’t too shabby. JuJu Smith-Schuster, Diontae Johnson, Chase Claypool, and Eric Ebron is something you can work with.
The crazy part is two years ago, Roethlisberger was one of the best quarterbacks in fantasy and led the league in passing yards. 34 touchdowns is sexy too. I just don’t know if we’re ever getting that guy again.