Forgiving Big Ben: A Question for Steeler Fans

Christian PurcellContributor IApril 26, 2010

PITTSBURGH - APRIL 19:  Ben Roethlisberger #7 of the Pittsburgh Steelers practices on April 19, 2010 at the Pittsburgh Steelers South Side training facility in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

Today, for the first time since his meeting with the commissioner, Ben Roethlisberger address the media. In a brief statement, Ben accepted the NFL's suspension and vowed to improve his behavior.

The question now: What will it take for Steeler Nation to forgive him?

Some people are under the belief that Ben Roethlisberger is innocent, and those people are certainly entitled to their opinion. However, looking at the situation, it's hard to argue that Ben didn't do something wrong on that fateful night in Milledgeville, Georgia.

The police report revealed several disturbing allegations against our previously beloved quarterback. Given the fact that Ben was never required to issue a statement, the police report is one-sided, giving people reason to doubt any of Ben's supposed wrongdoing.

Looking at the situation, if Ben was innocent, why would the Rooney family allow the NFL to suspend him? Why haven't his teammates come forward in his defense? Why has Ben willingly accepted a heavy-handed suspension that will cost him six games and more than $2 million?

Let's be rational. Whether all of the allegations are true, Ben is guilty, at the very least, of letting down his coaches, his teammates, and his fans.

So my question remains: What will it take for Steeler fans to forgive him?

For me, personally, to forgive Ben, I will need an honest account of the events from that night.

The problem with this whole situation is the fact that we stopped looking at Ben Roethlisberger, the football player, and started looking at Ben Roethlisberger, the man. And most people didn't like what they saw.

If Ben is going to turn a corner, as a man, he will need to confront the situation. Regardless of how damning, if he wants to regain our trust, it is imperative that we know the truth.