A Letter to Ben Roethlisberger from a Steelers Fan

Daniel R.Correspondent IJuly 22, 2009

TAMPA, FL - FEBRUARY 01:  Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger #7 of the Pittsburgh Steelers throws a pass against the Arizona Cardinals during Super Bowl XLIII on February 1, 2009 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. The Steelers won 27-23.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)

Dear Ben,

I want to thank you for helping the Pittsburgh Steelers become the best team in the NFL over the last five seasons.

From the start, you've been the kind of quarterback that Steeler Nation had been desperately waiting for, and you've given us many fond memories, including a pair of shiny new Lombardi Trophies, and one of the most memorable plays in Super Bowl history.

I was enjoying the afterglow of another championship, and the fact that, unlike last time, the ensuing offseason was relatively quiet, with James Harrison's gaffe about not wanting to visit the White House being the only soundbyte that caused even a minor stir.

By the time the middle of July came around, I began to feel excited for the the start of training camp, and the upcoming season. Everybody had kept their noses clean, and the team seemed acutely focused on avoiding another post-Super Bowl hangover.

Yet, here I am, now dreading the start of this season, thanks to this sexual assault lawsuit that you were slapped with last weekend. I found out about it Monday night, and I couldn't believe what I was reading.

The last 36 hours have felt more like 36 days as I've tried to get some understanding of what's going on, and have also had to endure people who don't like you, the Steelers, or Steeler Nation, having fun at our expense.

Now I don't know the whole story, and I don't believe that you raped or assaulted anybody. There are a lot of inconsistencies in the lawsuit, not the least of which is the fact that the plaintiff never bothered pressing criminal charges.

Regardless, only you, she, and God know what really happened, and if you're found out to have been guilty after all, then I think you deserve to be banned from the Pittsburgh Steelers and the NFL for the rest of your life.

On the other hand, even if you're not guilty, let me say this: Your days of sowing wild oats need to come to an abrupt end. You saw what happened to Kobe Bryant, yet here you are, six years later, in pretty much the same situation.

We all know that the biggest fools never learn from their own mistakes, but one important facet of wisdom is the ability to learn from the mistakes of others. You have clearly failed to do this; therefore, you are still a fool.

Furthermore, you seem to wear your faith in God on your sleeve, and go out of your way to praise Him on a regular basis. Methinks you doth protest much?

Now I'm hardly a devout Christian, but somehow I get the sense that God really doesn't approve of a great many things you do in your private life, especially if any of the rumors around the Pittsburgh club scene are true.

Everybody finds themselves in bad situations during their lives, but quite frankly, whether it's almost killing yourself riding a motorcycle without a helmet, or getting slapped with sexual assault allegations because you couldn't keep it in your pants, it really seems as though you're only capable of learning life's lessons the hard way.

In the meantime, there is nothing you can do about this other than let your legal team take over. Hopefully this is all a hoax, and we can get this out of the way as soon as possible. I'm not expecting that to happen, though.

And hopefully none of this will affect your performance on the field this season. If it does, then you owe your team another great big apology, just like the last time. You also owe Steeler Nation an apology, but most of all, if you really are serious about your faith, you owe God an apology too.

I admire you for your poise and leadership on the football field, and for being the best quarterback the Steelers have had in over 25 years. With that said, if you were even half the leader off the field as you are on the field, then chances are, you wouldn't be in the situation you are now. Now grow the hell up!

Daniel Rose
Steeler Nation Ambassador