Much of the backlash against Ben Roethlisberger following his sexual assault allegations had little to do with his troubling behavior towards women.
Stories floated around of Roethlisberger simply being a jerk: To fans, to waitresses, to women, to men, to fellow players, and to the media. (Many of these stories were published; many weren’t. His reputation was in place well before the investigation in Georgia.)
When Roethlisberger returned to the Steelers, he promised a different approach. And it appears he has mended fences with one subset of people he may have previously offended: The Pittsburgh media.
On Wednesday, the Pro Football Writers chapter in Pittsburgh gave Roethlisberger “The Chief Award.” The award is given annually to someone in the Steelers organization that exemplified “the spirit of cooperation” with the media shown by franchise founder Art Rooney. Roethlisberger is the first quarterback to win the award.