Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger will return and expects the Steelers to be back, too.
“I’ll be back and feel good,” Roethlisberger told reporters after Sunday’s win over the Bengals, via video from Chase Williams of WPXI. “We’ve got guys that just got better. We’ve got young guys who just kept getting better — guys like JuJu [Smith-Schuster], and I think James Conner. Guys that are just going to keep getting better. So I don’t think our window’s closed.”
Roethlisberger campaigned to keep things together as much as possible for next season despite the disappointment of the past couple of seasons.
He apparently doesn’t need any time this year to contemplate his future as he did after last season’s home loss to the Jaguars in the divisional round of the postseason.
The Steelers haven’t played in a Super Bowl since the 2010 season. They (likely) will miss the postseason for the first time in five seasons. (The Steelers actually — technically — aren’t dead yet. They still can get into the postseason as a wild-card team if the Titans and Colts tie tonight.)
Pittsburgh needed the Browns to beat the Ravens to clinch the division title, and many of the Steelers stayed on the field watching the end of that game after their game ended. They left Heinz Field with only themselves to blame, having lost four of their last six games.
“You want to win a Super Bowl every year. Every team does,” Roethlisberger said. “Only one team gets to. We made the playoffs the last few years, so we got a little spoiled in that sense.
“We actually got a little spoiled because we went to a lot of Super Bowls early, right? So we kind of thought we were going to do it every year, or every other year, or every third year. It’s not that easy. Look at teams who have never been there, or teams how long it takes them between Super Bowls or playoff runs. But we still strive for that every year.”