The Steelers could be saying goodbye to wide receiver Mike Wallace, cornerback Keenan Lewis and others in the next few weeks, continuing the trend of the last few seasons that finds longtime members of the team giving way to new faces.
Despite that, quarterback Ben Roethlisberger doesn’t think that the team is in decline or in transition. He thinks the front office will find quality players to plug into any open spots and he believes that the way last season ended will serve as inspiration for better results this time around.
“I don’t want to say it’s a transition phase because I feel like I’m still here and ready to rock and roll. I feel healthier, better. I feel like I’m in my prime and ready to play great football. And I feel that we’ve got guys around here who feel the same way,” Roethlisberger said, via the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. ”I think the frustration from last year will be motivation for guys who are back again.”
Roethlisberger might not feel that way, but the Steelers have been in a transition phase in the last couple of years. Players and coaches who played key roles have moved on and the team is still replacing some of the leading lights from a very prosperous decade-plus of football. Transition doesn’t automatically mean decline, though, so it’s not like Roethlisberger should be resigning himself to a losing season or expecting anything other than the rebound he expects from his team in 2013.