Say What?

Ben Roethlisberger tells Mike Prisuta that he's frustrated by the new playbook, but is confident he and the Steelers will learn it -- and master it.

Ben Roethlisberger's "Rosetta Stone" analogy as it relates to the new playbook has made the rounds, and it's gotten a few laughs. But the transition from the Bruce Arians offense to the Todd Haley offense isn't a laughing matter.

That explains all the meeting time the offense has been putting in of late just to get ready for next week's opening of OTAs.

The quarterback used the word "frustrated" to describe the overall vibe of the offense as that process continues.

"I think coach (Mike Tomlin) really wants to challenge us, me, maybe, in particular," Roethlisberger said during a Wednesday visit with the WDVE Morning Show. "I think he felt like I was real comfortable or something with the old offense, which, I don't know why that's a bad thing, but I'm not the head coach.

"I think this is definitely a challenge for us and it's making us re-focus. Excited? I don't know if that's the right word. Right now it's just so new and different for us it's actually creating a little more stress on us because we all feel frustrated. But I think the more work we put in the better it becomes, the easier it becomes.

"We'll get back to where we were where we feel super-comfortable with it."

The dynamic in play is quite similar to when Joe Walton replaced Tom Moore as Chuck Noll's offensive coordinator in1990. The team and staff learn the new OC's lingo, not the other way around.

"A lot of new terminology," Roethlisberger confirmed. "Some words are the same but they mean something different now. That's kinda tough. For eight years you think this word means ‘this' but now it means ‘this.'

"For instance, we had a route called a turn route. It was actually one Antonio (Brown) ran really well on third downs. It was kind of a post route, a turn route. Now, ‘turn' is a protection, so it has nothing to do with the route anymore. If we would say '62-turn,' that meant ‘62' was the protection and ‘turn' was the route. Now, we call ‘62-turn-something else,' ‘62-turn' is the protection.

"It's getting those words out of your head and what they used to mean to what they mean now."

Things are different enough on the South Side that Roethlisberger believes veterans are actually at a disadvantage.

"A rookie coming in right now has a way better advantage than a veteran," he said. "People might scratch their head at that, but you're coming in with a clean slate. All you know is your college offense and you know that's out the window. You've never heard some of these things.

"It's definitely going to be trickier for the veteran guys but that's what makes us veterans. We've gotta learn and put the hard work in."

That might make it the perfect time to prepare a couple of rookies, say Mike Adams at left tackle and David DeCastro at left guard, to start along the offensive line. But if all the new terminology and other Haley-induced changes include Willie Colon playing at right guard rather than right tackle, Roethlisberger isn't saying.

"I don't know what I'm allowed to tell you, Mike, sorry," was as far as he'd go on that subject.

The better news is the first game that counts isn't until Sept. 9 at Denver.

"I don't think it's going to be anything crazy," Roethlisberger assessed. "We're not going to the wishbone and stuff like that. There will be some changes. The frustrating part, the toughest part, I should say, is the verbiage, just trying to figure out the verbiage. I don't think it's going to be too much different looking.

"It's a learning process but we're getting it. It's coming along. We had good work yesterday and we're headed back in this morning. We've had really great turnouts, not because we feel we have to learn this stuff, but because we want to. We want to be the best we can be. I think we're making really good progress."

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