Ben Roethlisberger Retiring? Steelers QB Likely to Return Next Season

will ben roethlisberger retire, retirement

Getty Ben Roethlisberger is likely to return to the Steelers next season.

Ben Roethlisberger sparked a lot of debate last off-season after noting retirement could be in his future. However, Roethlisberger’s latest comments indicate he plans to return to the Steelers for 2018. Roethlisberger spoke with Yahoo Sports about his future prior to the Steelers playoff matchup against the Jaguars.

“I am not thinking about that [returning next season] right now,” Roethlisberger told Yahoo Sports. “I don’t think it is my last [game]. I am not thinking about that. I am going out to play this one and give it everything I have. … You have to treat every game like it could be your last, because you never know when it is. We saw an example of that earlier in the season with Ryan [Shazier]. You never know when it could be your last. Hoping it’s not his last. You have to go out and play every play, and enjoy every play and game, like it’s your last.”

In an interview after the 2016 season ended, Roethlisberger sounded like he was debating coming back for this past season. Roethlisberger sounded non-committal in a Pittsburgh radio interview days after the 2016 season ended (via Pittsburgh Post-Gazette).

I’m gonna take this offseason to evaluate, to consider all options, to consider health and family and things like that and just kind of take some time away to evaluate next season — if there’s gonna be a next season…I think at [this] point in my career, at my age, that’s the prudent and smart thing to do every year…Like I said, I’m gonna take some time to evaluate with my family and really do a lot of praying about it and make sure it’s the right thing for me and my family.

Prior to Roethlisberger’s most recent comments, ESPN’s Dan Graziano predicted the Steelers quarterback would retire after the 2017 season.

In 2018, Roethlisberger finally follows through on that retirement threat. Dobbs, a former student of rocket science at Tennessee who spent two years backing up Big Ben, grabs the controls in 2019.

Former Steelers offensive lineman Willie Colon told Pro Football Talk that Roethlisberger did seriously consider retiring last off-season.

I got to sit down and talk to him and one thing he told me is he did take it seriously. He’s dealt with a lot of injuries…He’s passionate about playing, but one thing that keeps his fire going is that offensive line. You have to worry about the health of Ben Roethlisberger. Can you keep him upright, can he stay healthy for the duration? They have the offensive line, they have the pieces around him to make it work.

Roethlisberger likely will make the media rounds one final time this week before heading into the off-season. While his tune could change, it would be surprising if the Steelers quarterback walked away from the game. Roethlisberger turns 36 this off-season, but the trend of NFL quarterbacks has been to play much later than Roethlisberger’s current age. Roethlisberger has dealt with his fair share of injuries, and these could impact his decision to walk away sooner than some of his peers. For now, all signs point to Roethlisberger being behind center for the Steelers next fall.

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