Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger (10.31.21)

On what today’s win says about the Steelers after facing adversity in the previous weeks:

“We have a lot of heart. I told that to the guys before the game. I said you can make up for talent and you can make up for things with heart. I thought they showed a lot of heart today.”


On being excited coming off of the field after the last play:

“No, I control my emotions. I just told those guys, I told (Steelers RB) Najee (Harris) and I told the offensive line don’t ever take a win against these guys in this stadium for granted ever. It is always hard fought and special. I have played a lot of games here, and I don’t take any of them for granted.”


On the play call for the first two-point conversion:

“It was the fourth or fifth option on that. They had a bunch of guys over to the left so that option was out. (Steelers WR) Chase (Claypool) was the next option, and I was still going to force it to him, and I don’t know – I’m just crazy I guess. I wish it would have counted – that would have been a great story.”


On taking up so much time during final play of the game:

“That is just what it was. We were going to do that other play before the penalty. It was just waste as much time as you can. The clock doesn’t stop until the ball hits the ground. It was probably a little bit too close to inbounds. I thought I threw it plenty far, but maybe I should have given the Dawg Pound a souvenir.”


On how things change when working with an emergency unit to kick FGs:

“I tell guys all the time, everyone wants to be a quarterback until you have to throw the ball and someone is about to hit you. I’m glad (Steelers K Chris) Boswell is OK, but that is a situation that no one wants to be in. You are sitting there watching the game transpire, and you are like, ‘OK, if they score, we are down by two  and we don’t have a field goal [kicker]. What are we going to do?’ You just got to go into the mindset that you are going to go for it on fourth down and you got to be ready to go for a two-point play.”


On being 12-2-1 at the Browns and what that means:

“Nice. I don’t take it for granted. I woke up this morning, it was a cloudy gray day and then the sun came out. I don’t know the last time the sun was shining during a game here, but it sure did feel good to get the win.”


On Steelers T Dan Moore Jr. playing against Browns DE Myles Garrett:

“I have been joking with Dan all week, and I just told him now he can finally sleep. Myles is a special talent, and I told him after the game that he can take the tombstone from his yard, but I will take the win. He is special. I thought Dan did a great job. I think Myles had one sack, maybe two, I don’t even know. It is tough to ask a rookie to go against that guy, and what he did today was pretty special. I can’t say enough about the line – run game and pass pro, they are the heart of this group.”


On rookies like Harris and Steelers TE Pat Freiermuth coming through big time for the team:

“They are, and KG (Steelers C Kendrick Green). At the end of the game, they know we are going to run the ball. We are under center, they are teeing off on him and every snap was perfect. You can’t say enough about the way guys step up and make plays. Pat’s touchdown was spectacular. I really didn’t get to see it. I can’t wait to watch it. From what I saw of it – the quick view of it – I think it is going to be pretty special.”


On thanking Steelers Vice President & General Manager Kevin Colbert for adding rookies and their performance today:

“No, but I have thanked (Steelers offensive coordinator Matt) Canada – I think he had more to do with it.”


On trusting Freiermuth with the coverage on the touchdown:

“Yeah, we talked about that on the sideline literally before that play. It was kind of a built play right there. Talking to Coach Canada and Sully (Steelers quarterbacks Coach Mike Sullivan) and (QB Joshua) Dobbs, we were actually trying to get Chase the ball just because of a look we thought we were going to get. Kind of last minute, Pat was like, ‘What do you want me to do?’ I said to run what he ran. The guy covered Chase pretty well, and the guy had his back to Pat. We always say, if a defender’s back is to the quarterback, then we have to win. I just tried to give him a chance, and Pat proves again that he can be reliable. It was a pretty good play. I’m going to be careful not to give him too many compliments (laughter).”


On if this game had the most effective mix of run and pass this season:

“It felt good. I felt like we still left a lot out there. There were still some plays that were, ‘Ah shoot. That could have maybe kept a drive going or could have done some different things.’ We ran it when we had to run it at the end. They are a really good defense, and we did what we had to do.”


On the play to Steelers WR Diontae Johnson at the end:

“That is a two-point conversion play. That we talked about again on the sideline like, ‘Hey listen. If we get in this situation, let’s try something.’ We put (Steelers WR) Ray-Ray (McCloud) in there, and it was just, ‘Boy, I hope this thing works.’ I watched the coverage, and as soon as it came out of my hand, I knew he had it. I told him he could have scored – that would have been kind of fun – but it is an unbelievable feeling at the end of a game when your guys are running with the ball and you know it is probably over.”


On if he knew whether the team could attempt an extra point or FG at all:

“At halftime, we had talked about it. We started talking, ‘Am I going to start doing some pooch punting or am I going to hold?’ because I am the emergency holder. Then we found out that (P) Pressley (Harvin III) does not kick, and we are like. ‘Let’s let him try, but I hold with my right hand so that probably would not be good if he hit my hand.’ There was a lot of discussion at halftime. (Steelers Head Coach) Mike (Tomlin) said he is not kicking so let’s just get ready to go.”


On Harris’ touchdown leap and other key third down plays:

“Yeah, I hate when Najee jumps. I tell him all of the time, ‘Stop jumping,’ but that was a pretty good play. If he can score on it, we will take it. He just keeps growing. His pass pro, catching out of the backfield, running the ball and at the end of the game protecting the ball kind of being smart, he is just going to keep getting better. He is a special talent.”


On if he is looking at the AFC North standings today, given the Bengals lost:

“No, I have no idea who won and lost. We can’t worry or control what is going on out there. We dug ourselves enough of a hole that we have to find a way to get out of it. We can’t worry about anything but us and what we can control, and that is trying to win football games. We came on the road against a really good football team, and we won the game. One step at a time is what we have to do.”


On Garrett wanting to give him a good sendoff and what sendoff did he actually give him if this was the last time playing in Cleveland:

“Just that we won the game. Like I said, that is all the matters. I don’t care about anything else. He is a heck of a football player. He got a sack – good for him – but we got the win.”


On what today’s win shows about the Steelers’ resiliency:

“I’m not going to say we have the clear answer that we figured it out, but we came on the road and won a football game against a good team. I think hopefully that instills confidence in guys – young guys and older guys – letting us know that we can do this thing. It is not over, and there is still a lot of road ahead of us.”


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