The Steelers better start buying up all the bubble wrap they can find in the three rivers area. Their success in 2012 hangs in the balance of such an acquirement. They will need that and more to protect Ben Roethlisberger – the man who is carrying this team.
Through four games, Ben Roethlisberger is on pace for 4,444 yards, 32 touchdowns and 4 interceptions. But forget the numbers. If Roethlisberger is not already in conversations about being MVP of this league, then those that are in charge of such things need their heads examined and look at the 2010 and 2011 seasons.
The Indianapolis Colts suffered the hugest collapse in the NFL during the 2011 season. And if anyone thinks it has anything other to do than with Peyton Manning being out of the lineup all season long, then they too need their head examined. If there were ever an MVP in the NFL during that season, it was a guy who didn’t even step on the field. The Colts and the rest of the NFL learned quickly just how ‘valuable’ Peyton Manning was. Without him to lead the offense, the Colts went 2-14.
Now to the parallels. Without Ben Roethlisberger, the Pittsburgh Steelers very well could be a 5 win or less team. Truly. The man is carrying this team like Atals and the World. The Steelers defense is too porous to hold off an offense – not once but twice on 4th and shorts – in 4th quarters. The offense is continually sloppy with penalties and no consistent running game. It’s becoming a one man show out there…. much like Manning and the Colts during his hey days in Indy. Big Ben even favors running the no huddle and calling his own plays.
I’m in no way saying that Ben is the gun slinger that Manning was (yes was). But there’s a direct correlation with how dependent the two teams became and have become so dependent on their quarterback to carry them and win games. Ben gets the job done. It’s unconventional at times, which makes the idea of him being an MVP candidate even better. There isn’t another quarterback in the league now and in years to come that I want on my team more than Big Ben when it comes to sealing the deal in the 4th quarter.
I know. It’s way to early to be talking MVP. But if the season were to end right now, Roethlisberger would have to be part of this conversation and a front runner. Should the season continue at this pace for Ben – and there’s no signs showing that it won’t – then he certainly will be on that short list. (Oh and case you were wondering, Ben’s potential end of season numbers would be better than Manning’s first two MVP seasons.)
I wonder if UPS sells bubble wrap in bulk……