Wednesday with Ben, Sept. 16

Ben Roethlisberger gives some insight on the Steelers offense, including his fourth-quarter comebacks.

Ben Roethlisberger met with the Pittsburgh media Wednesday. Here's what the quarterback of the Pittsburgh Steelers had to say:

What do you know about the Bears and what they might try to do to you guys?

They've copied, it looks like, a lot of stuff from the Eagles. They're bringing blitzes and mugging linebackers in and blitzing guys from all over. It's going to be a big challenge for us this week.

Of course you remember that Eagles game.

Yes I do. I try not to but I do.

How does their defense change with (Brian) Urlacher out?

You hear them say that guys have to step up and we can't miss a beat, but when you're missing one of the best defensive players in the game, it's going to be different. They're definitely going to miss him, but I'm sure they have guys who are ready to step in and play. We still have to be prepared for whoever is there.

In the moment, do you enjoy the comebacks and last-second drives or do you have to wait until it's over to enjoy it?

During, I don't really think about it. I just think about having to do it now. Afterward, it's more fun to think about. I'd prefer not to have to do it at all and just to be up and sit on the sidelines at the end. It's fun when it's over and you can look back on it.

Isn't that something that defines a quarterback?

One of the things, yeah, I think so. What do you think about when you think about (John) Elway? The drive and and the stuff that he's done. So, yeah, it's a neat thing for a quarterback.

How underrated are guys like Mewelde Moore and Kevin Faulk, third-down backs? How big of a part of the offense are they?

They're huge in the no-huddle package and on third downs, getting out and catching the ball and making guys miss and getting first downs, moving the chains. What Mewelde does is really underrated I think.

Is that because they're tough matchups, usually on a linebacker?

That's part of it. Some guys like Mo, he takes pride in that third down and knowing exactly what he needs to get on third down and being able to help on protecting, but slipping out. If you notice, a lot of times with Mewelde, it's kind of a broken play with him and we just have a good rapport.

Who besides Elway do you think of with the comebacks?

For me, I was a Montana guy. Anytime, at the end, when he had the ball in his hands, it seemed like Joe was going to get it done.

Do you remember in ‘05 the Bears with Urlacher and how might they be without him?

They asked me that in the Chicago media. That was a long time ago. I do know that their a great defense, very physical, very fast and it's a big challenge for us.

The coach seemed to be very pleased with your passing game.

Yeah, it's one of those things where the media here and around the country say that if we throw the ball 25 times, we can't win. So we quietly laugh at all of you guys - more than usual. It's fun to win it that way and the o-line takes pride in that as well, just as much as the running game. We take pride when we can throw it too.

Does that include Jerome (Bettis)?

Absolutely. Jerome knows he's the media. I would laugh in his face too.

You've been able to use the pump fake a lot. Is that something you've incorporated more this year?

I'm trying to use it more this year to use it. Sometimes, I'm really going to throw it and I decide not to, so it looks pretty realistic if you ask me.

Last week it seemed like you really had them going one way before throwing another.

Last week we really tried to use it a lot because when teams do zone drops, that's the best way to move guys. So we tried to do that to get the backs and short routes underneath open.

You did that a lot of in the final drive of the Super Bowl as well.

Some of that was unintentional. I was going to throw the ball and decided not to at the last minute.

Is this team using the pass to set up the run at times?

I see us being a balanced offense. That's what I've always said we are and we're the "Steelers," so we're supposed to run the ball. But we have some great wide receivers, great tight ends and our offensive line can pass block as well, so we're a balanced offense.

Do you remember that Chicago game being what jump-started you for that Super Bowl run?

It was a big win for us. It was cold, it was snowing, kind of one of those motivational-type games.

Do people overemphasize that "Steelers" mentality?

I think some of it comes from that being what the Steelers always did in the past. I always say you have to keep up with the times. That's kind of evolving into a passing offense - league wide. People talk about the Steelers and the run game because we want to be physical. When you want to be physical, people assume that's the run game. But that can mean a lot of different things. I guess you can go all the way back to the ‘70s and we were a grind-it-out team. We're not that ‘70s team. We're our own identity and that includes a lot of no-huddle stuff. It's been good.

How much of it is confidence at the end of games and how much is ability?

I think it's a lot of both. You have to be confident and you have to want the ball. It's like wanting the ball for a last-second shot, wanting the ball at the end of the game. You know you can do it. When you can't, it's not like you get down on yourself, you just got stopped somehow.

Does the game slow down for you in those moments?

For me, it's fun. It turns into when you were back in high school or just playing in the back yard and you're running around making plays. I've done the no-huddle and that last-minute throwing it around stuff in high school and college so it just kind of brings back my childhood.

What do you make of Jerome's criticisms this week?

I haven't seen one thing, so I don't know what you're talking about. I honestly don't. I guess someone will have to tell me what he said.

He was critical of your running game and the offensive line.

Coming from an old running back, that doesn't surprise me.

This will be your first game in Chicago. What do you think about that?

You always know the tradition and know what they have. I'm just glad it's not late in the year and snowing and blistery Soldier Field. Hopefully, it's nice Soldier Field.

What do you see from that front four?

It's a great group, another good group that finds ways to blitz and get to the quarterback and still has guys that just flat out beats players. It's going to be a challenge for us.

What is it about the fourth quarter comebacks?

The want to win.

When you played high school basketball, did you score all of your points in the fourth quarter? A lot of them.

So it's been a life-long attribute? Yes.


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