Ben Roethlisberger

Maybe in two seasons or maybe even at the end of this one, the Pittsburgh Steelers will need to start thinking about someone other than Ben Roethlisberger playing quarterback. His tendency to get hurt is overshadowing his still fantastic ability on the field and that’s costing the Steelers wins.

While the Steelers are doing a good job of protecting him (only 1.7 sacks per game) and even if it has to do with the difficulty of bringing him down or even hitting him, he keeps missing games. Michael Vick subbed in for him and so has Landry Jones. It’s just not the same without him for the 6-5 Steelers, even though they’re 3-3 when he’s a starter. Roethlisberger came on to play instead of the Jones in the win against the Browns, but came off at the end of the game against the Seahawks, a loss.

The question is, when and who? Is Jones, who finally got some playing time with mixed to negative results this season, the guy the Steelers are counting on? It’s certainly not Vick. Maybe the next quarterback is waiting in the draft, but whoever he is, it’s going to be difficult replacing Roethlisberger, who has started for the Steelers since his rookie year in 2004, taking them to a three of Super Bowls, being on the winning end of them twice.

The when part? Maybe when the injuries start taking their toll. He’s been cleared of the concussion he was feared to have had in the Seahawks game, but that doesn’t mean he’ll jump right back into the action. The Steelers have got to be worried about the amount of games he’s missing, and the amount of punishment he’s been taking. Do you draft for a quarterback right away? Or wait for it to be truly over for him, and then just start sifting through the options, in hoping they don’t enter a cycle of struggling to find the next franchise quarterback?

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