The NFL has just wrapped up week 7 of the 2021-2022 NFL season. Many teams are surprising fans and just as many teams are disappointing their fans. In every division in the AFC and the NFC, there is an outright team that is dominating their competition. This is a completely different start to the season than many teams had in the previous season.
The Steelers are a prime example of this. They had a healthy roster going into the 2020-2021 season. They proceeded to start the season off with a franchise record of 11-0. They ended the regular season 12-4 winning the highly competitive AFC North. Even though the Steelers fell in their first round of the playoffs they showed what they could accomplish with a healthy team.
Every team has a great leader at quarterback who sets the tone for the team and is a prime role model around the team. For the Steelers, this is veteran quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. He came off the 2019-2020 season, after getting hurt halfway through it, getting elbow surgery in his throwing arm. He had one of his best seasons in 2020-2021 when going 12-4. He proved to the whole team and NFL that he still had talent.
The 2021-2022 season has been a disappointing start for the Steelers after starting the previous season off as 11-0. The Steelers are currently in last place in the AFC North with a 3-3 record. The AFC North is being dominated by the Bengals and the Ravens who both have a 5-2 record.
The Steelers are now looking at their leader, Ben Roethlisberger, who they hope will lead the team to more wins after this week 7 bye. Roethlisberger is currently 23rd in passing yards among starters in the NFL. He has only thrown 4 interceptions through 6 games. The Steelers recently lost star receiver Juju Smith-Shuster to a season-ending injury. This will hurt the already struggling Steelers offense.
Many Steelers fans are wondering if Ben Roethlisberger’s time is up as the starter. The Steelers have 2 experienced backup quarterbacks. Mason Rudolph went in when Ben got hurt during the 2019-2020 season and got a lot of experience. The other backup is former Washington Redskins starter, Dwayne Haskins. He started for Washington all 16 games during the 2019 season. With these two experienced backup quarterbacks, many think they should get the chance over Roethlisberger.
Las Vegas quarterback, Derek Carr, disagrees with the hate the Steelers veteran is getting. Before the week 2 game between the Raiders and the Steelers Carr had a nice thing to say about the opposing quarterback. “One of the best quarterbacks in our game, still” This shows that Carr has a lot of respect for the Steelers veteran. Carr thinks Rothisburger is still one of the best in the game.
Ben has not been proving this statement so far but will he be able to change the rhythm of the season. If Ben can’t produce for the Steeler’s offense then will it be time for Rudolph or Haskins to take leadership. The Steelers will find out in the upcoming week as they play their division rival, the Cleveland Browns.