Ben Roethlisberger Expected To Begin Practice Monday

Big Ben's back! Kind of! According to an Associated Press report, Ben Roethlisberger is expected to join his teammates for the opening of Pittsburgh's practice on Monday:

Ben Roethlisberger will line up under center, take the snap and throw his first pass to a teammate since the Steelers ended the season Jan. 3.

The Steelers return to the practice field Monday for the first time since their 9-7 record wasn’t good enough to get them into the playoffs. Roethlisberger is expected to be among them, one week to the day since prosecutors decided not to charge him after a college student accused him of sexual assault.

While there won’t be a criminal proceeding that could have disrupted the Steelers before, during or after the season, the fallout from Roethlisberger’s latest off-the-field problem and its impact on a team that regularly contends for championships could be long-lasting.

It's interesting that he won't be taking any more time off to deal with this issue that's still hanging over his head, but without criminal charges pending, there isn't much reason for Roethlisberger not to practice. He's likely going to be suspended for multiple games over this, but that wouldn't and won't affect his status in practice.

Of course, Roethlisberger's presence also indicates support from the front office, something for which he ought to be grateful. The Rooneys are notoriously ruthless when it comes to chopping popular players when their price tag gets too big or they become a distraction to the team; it may be the case that only Charlie Batch's status as backup quarterback is the only thing keeping Roethlisberger in town. Hey, the Rooneys may be cold-blooded, but they're not suicidal.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.