With the annual Hall of Fame vote coming up on Saturday and increased chatter that Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger will nail down a spot in Canton with a third Super Bowl win, a guy who won only one title in three tries takes issue with the idea that Roethlisberger belongs among the game’s immortals.
Former Rams, Giants, and Cardinals quarterback Kurt Warner says it’s too early to bang out a bronze bust for Big Ben.
“I like Ben,” Warner told 620 KTAR in Phoenix. “I think Ben’s great and I think he’s a winner. And to me that speaks volumes for your legacy. But when you’re talking about the best quarterbacks in the league, you have to look at all the factors here.
“I mean, he won a Super Bowl and he was 8-23. But he won the Super Bowl and he gets that on his resume. But he was still 8-23.”
Warner is referring to Super Bowl XL, in which Roethlisberger completed nine of 21 passes for 123 yards and two interceptions. He also had seven rushing attempts for 25 yards and a touchdown.
In Super Bowl XLIII against Warner’s Cardinals, Roethlisberger completed 21 of 30 passes for 256 yards, one interception, and the game-winning touchdown pass to Santonio Holmes.
“I’m just waiting to see Ben as the guy that carries his team at some point in time,” Warner said. “The fortunate thing for him is he hasn’t had to do that. He carries them in the last two minutes. He makes some key plays. [He's] phenomenal out of the pocket and ad-libbing. But for me, if you go to the Hall of Fame, you have to be a guy who can carry your team week in and week out as a quarterback. That’s my opinion.”
Sorry, but we’d rather have a guy who carries the team when it counts than when the game isn’t on the line. Even though Roethlisberger may not have had impressive numbers in Super Bowl XL, he presided over three straight road playoff wins to get there. In each of this year’s playoff wins, Roethlisberger delivered clutch third-down throws to Antonio Brown, including a 58-yarder on third-and-19 that, if the Steelers beat the Packers on Sunday, rightly should be remembered as one of the biggest plays in NFL postseason history.
Then there’s the fact that, since losing in the AFC title game to cap his rookie season, Roethlisberger has led the Steelers to nine of 10 win in postseason games
Nine of 10. Warner didn’t do that. Brady hasn’t done that. Manning hasn’t done that.
So while we respect Warner’s opinion, we’ll disagree with it. If Roethlisberger gets his third Super Bowl win in three tries, he’ll be bound for Canton five years after calling it quits.
Especially since he may end up with four or five rings.