Sunday, July 27, 2014

R-E-S-P-E-C-T for Ben by @pghgirl15222

Big Ben is easily one of the most underrated quarterbacks in the league and it has been put into perspective again. Social media can be a gift or a curse. It can be a great place to discuss various topics, but it is also a place for idiots to get attention. While gliding through my timeline I saw someone respond to a Ben contract snub tweet with the notion that it does not matter because Ben is a jerk. Correction: Ben WAS a jerk. The issue is the fact that football is living under so much hypocrisy.

Ben has had a rough football start. He could have used some off field advice from guys like Polamalu on how to conduct himself. He did not and managed to get himself into some trouble. Fine. That was years ago. Move on people. What makes what Ray Rice did so much less than Ben getting himself into stupid situations? The fact that Rice publicly apologized in a pathetic attempt to salvage himself? Or that the girl he hurt decided to marry him regardless of his conduct? People cannot seem to let go of this Ben thing. They do not want to discuss about how humble he has been over the last few years. Or how much of a class act he has been during the contract snub. Nope. Only that he was accused, but never actually charged with anything. I was one of the biggest Ben critics a few years ago but reality is reality. Ben has turned himself around and has managed to be the mark of consistency on the field as well as off.

A lot of announcers, writers, and fans do not care unless quarterbacks are making huge plays all of the time. Ben has been quietly consistent over the past few seasons and 2013 has likely been one of his best ones.

On ESPN a few days ago, I read an article about Ben that had some interesting facts. First, he has won 67 percent of his 156 career starts. Second, "in the last two seasons, Roethlisberger has 27 TDs and zero INTS inside the 20-yard line."

Roethlisberger has been one of the most efficient passers in NFL history. He currently ranks 9th all-time in passer rating with 92.6%. He has the fourth highest career winning percentage (.710) of quarterbacks with at least 100 regular season starts. I could literally go on and on with NFL records that Ben is apart of.

These are the stats that are never discussed, never noticed. He is not flashy, and he has a bad past, so stuff like this is ignored. But put it this way: if he went down after a play, and did not get up, do you think we would make the playoffs? Me either.

I am not totally sure what separates some players committing atrocious acts against women and getting away with it, versus those that don't get away with it. I rarely, if ever, heard about the fact that James Harrison was accused of assaulting his girlfriend in 2008. Nope, only that Ben Roethlisberger was accused of sexual assault regardless of the fact that the charges were dropped.

The argument is old, tired and reeks of desperation.

So let's start giving Ben the respect he deserves. When he retires we might have wished we had.

Statistic quotes from this ESPN article:

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