You can't fault either of these players for on-field performance.
But in Pittsburgh, that alone won't suffice. This team has a long-held and hard-earned image for being one of the more upstanding franchises in the NFL, content to disabuse themselves of malcontents and troubled souls.
Bam Morris was emerging as a force at running back until a Super Bowl week drug arrest in 1995. He was gone immediately.
Cedrick Wilson ran into legal troubles in 2007 and was gone immediately as well.
The Steelers haven't shown the same speed with handling Reed, who has been twice arrested for charges stemming from public drunkenness. The team usually will give players a second chance, but Reed is now on number three.
The team used it's franchise tag on him, but they will be quick to dispose of him should he run into further legal troubles. He seems to have turned the corner and learned his lesson, so we can only hope he stays clean.
I've been loathe to write about Roethlisberger's situation simply because I don't think it's news. It does not, yet at least, relate directly to anything going on during a game. It doesn't have any direct connection to the organization either. That's what I'm tasked to write about.
But Roethlisberger is also on strike two. The team seems content to see if this too ends up being nothing more than empty allegations (I'm not making any decisions on that until I see the case). If it is, they will likely give Roethlisberger a speech about the team's ideals and how they will not hesitate to part with a star who abuses their image.
If these are not empty allegations, well, Pittsburgh would likely go through a losing season before they would keep someone with that kind of reputation.
Hopefully these two guys have put their troubles behind them by the time the season begins.