The two words that Steelers fans don't want to ever hear are Roethlisberger and surgery. But based on all the information, the city of Pittsburgh can exhale.
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger underwent arthroscopic surgery to repair the meniscus in his right knee Wednesday. According to ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter, it's the same procedure the two-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback had done on his left knee in 2005. During that season, he needed three weeks to recover from that surgery and ended up leading the Steelers to a Super Bowl title.
Based on that timetable, Roethlisberger should be ready for the start of Steelers' training camp in late July, which is about seven weeks away.
This is the statement from Steelers coach Mike Tomlin: "Earlier today, Ben had minor surgery on his right knee that was the result of slight discomfort this offseason. We advised him to get the surgery done to ensure he will be completely healthy for the start of training camp. This surgery will have no long-term effects on his health."
The long-term effect is what is important with Roethlisberger. The past two seasons, he hasn't been the same after getting injured. In this case, he should have plenty of time to rehab because there's no reason to rush.
This is why you have to commend Roethlisberger for taking care of it now. He apparently could have tried to continue to work through the pain but decided to have surgery Wednesday to ensure he will be fully recovered by training camp. This is not like the James Harrison situation from a year ago, when the linebacker waited to have surgery on his knee in training camp, which caused him to miss the start of the season.
Roethlisberger is scheduled to miss only the final two weeks of offseason camps, including next week's mandatory one. Bruce Gradkowski will likely take the reps with the first team.
So there's no reason to panic about Roethlisberger's injury. The bigger concern is whether the Steelers can keep Roethlisberger healthy for an entire regular season.