It was only a week ago when the hot topic was quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and his inability to bring back the Steelers late in games. I speculated that one explanation was Roethlisberger's health, and he essentially acknowledged Sunday that he rushed back from his rib and shoulder injuries.
After Sunday's regular-season finale, Roethlisberger initially told reporters that he was fine. Then, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Roethlisberger said, "I don't know if I'm healthy enough to go" to the Pro Bowl. He is currently a second alternate.
Roethlisberger injured his rib and shoulder on Nov. 12 against Kansas City and returned after missing three games. He lost three of four starts upon coming back and threw two costly interceptions late in losses to Dallas and Cincinnati.
Asked about his immediate goal, Roethlisberger said, "Just get healthy first and foremost. I already started to formulate a plan with [conditioning coach] Garrett Giemont to get my body better and ready to go."
Roethlisberger was sacked 30 times in 13 games this season, an average of 2.3 per game. That's slightly down from last season when he was sacked 2.6 times per game (40 in 15 games).