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    Default Steelers ponder suspension of Roethlisberger

    Steelers ponder suspension of Roethlisberger

    Tuesday, April 13, 2010
    By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette



    Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger expressed "gratitude" Monday that he was not charged with sexual assault in Georgia and sorrow for causing "disappointment and negative attention."

    But his troubles might not be over. Sources have told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that the Steelers are considering a suspension of their 28-year-old quarterback -- if National Football League commissioner Roger Goodell does not beat them to the punch -- even though prosecutors in Georgia announced the investigation and case against him have been dropped.

    Steelers President Art Rooney II was described as "furious" by some after watching a news conference from Milledgeville, Ga., Monday afternoon that detailed in graphic terms some of Mr. Roethlisberger's escapades with a drunken 20-year-old woman. Mr. Rooney later issued a statement that the organization will consider the "next steps in this process" after consulting with Mr. Goodell. Mr. Rooney said the commissioner will meet with Mr. Roethlisberger in the next few days.

    The quarterback spoke publicly for the first time since the incident with the college student in the bathroom of a club in the Georgia college town. At the Steelers South Side practice facility, reporters and photographers gathered at 7 p.m. behind a roped-off area in the locker room, where Mr. Roethlisberger, dressed in a long-sleeved maroon Nike button-down shirt and gray slacks with his blond hair slicked back, stood behind a podium and read a statement:

    "I'd like to begin by expressing gratitude for the thorough investigation process in Georgia and the prosecutor's decision not to bring charges. I know without a doubt it is the right conclusion. I don't intend to discuss any details related to the events in Georgia. I am happy to put this behind me and move forward.

    "I am truly sorry for the disappointment and negative attention I have brought to my family, my teammates and coaches, the Rooneys and the NFL. I understand that the opportunities I have been blessed with are a privilege, and that much is expected of me as the quarterback of Pittsburgh Steelers. I absolutely want to be the leader this team deserves, valued in the community and a role model to kids. I have much work to do to earn this trust, and I am committed to improving and showing everyone my true values.

    "I am excited to get back to work with my teammates, and I am more determined than ever to have a great season. I intend to make my family, friends and the Steeler Nation proud on all fronts."

    Mr. Roethlisberger took no questions from the gathered media of about 50. It was the second time in nine months he had read a statement from a podium at the Steelers facility in response to a sexual assault claim by a woman. However, while coach Mike Tomlin and personnel head Kevin Colbert stood in the front of the room in obvious support of their quarterback while he faced the media last summer, Mr. Roethlisberger stood alone Monday. He was sued last year by a woman in Nevada who claims he sexually assaulted her. He was not criminally charged in that case.

    While Fredric D. Bright, the district attorney of the Ocmulgee Judicial Circuit in Georgia, said he will not prosecute this case, he revealed some graphic details of what happened the night of March 4 and early morning hours of March 5 in a Milledgeville, Ga., nightclub.

    "We are not condoning Mr. Roethlisberger's actions that night," Mr. Bright said at a news conference. "But we do not prosecute morals, we prosecute crimes."

    The NFL and the Steelers, however, can punish the quarterback based on the league's conduct policy and a team's possible claim to conduct detrimental to the ballclub. One of the possible issues is Mr. Bright's conclusion that Mr. Roethlisberger could have been cited for providing alcohol to a minor.

    Multiple Steelers sources indicated that Mr. Rooney is considering various types of punishment for his quarterback, including suspension from a game or games in 2010. It's also possible the NFL could take that decision out of Mr. Rooney's hands by issuing a suspension under the league's conduct policy.

    In his statement, Mr. Rooney said:

    "During the past few weeks I have met with Ben on a number of occasions, not only to discuss this incident but also to discuss his commitment to making sure something like this never happens again.

    "The Pittsburgh Steelers take the conduct of players and staff very seriously. Ben will now have to work hard to earn back the respect and trust of Steelers fans, and to live up to the leadership responsibilities we all expect of him."

    Some of the raw details of the incident last month might only strengthen the case against him by the league and the Steelers.

    Mr. Bright said he could not pursue the case because he did not believe he could prove it beyond a reasonable doubt.

    The NFL and/or the Steelers, however, do not need such proof.

    Mr. Goodell, during the NFL meetings in Orlando, Fla., last month, said, "We are concerned that Ben continues to put himself in this position." An NFL spokesman said the commissioner would have no further comment but would meet with Mr. Roethlisberger soon. Mr. Goodell also can require that Mr. Roethlisberger undergo counseling.

    Mr. Bright said what others -- including Mr. Rooney and Mr. Goodell -- might want to tell Mr. Roethlisberger these days. Mr. Bright said if it were his son, he would tell him to "grow up."

    "Come on, you're supposed to stand for something," Mr. Bright said.

    "You need to be a role model for your team, your city, the NFL. You can do better."

    Mr. Bright concluded that, "I hope that he's learned something from this, I really do."


    Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/10103/10 ... z0kxNHfsim

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    Default Re: Steelers ponder suspension of Roethlisberger

    I really hope Ben gets suspended without pay.

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    Default Re: Steelers ponder suspension of Roethlisberger

    My take on this. Ben met with the Rooney's several times to discuss the incident. You would think Mr. Rooney would know all the details and although upset at hearing them, instead it reads like this is the first he kinew of it and was shocked. This is like when Vick lied to the owner about dogfighting. There should have been zero surprise to Mr. Rooney. Did Ben lie to him? Makes you wonder. Not good for Ben. Also Ben looked ridiculous in that outfit he wore to read his statement. Who the hell is advising him? The same idiot who in his party blocked the bathroom door? If you want to start your reimage, at least come out with a sensible haircut and a nice suit. Way it sounds, 2-4 games in coming at him, enough to wreck a whole season.

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    Default Re: Steelers ponder suspension of Roethlisberger

    The guy was CLEARED of all charges, he shouldnt be suspended by the team at all and if he is he can fight it.

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    Default Re: Steelers ponder suspension of Roethlisberger

    We're a different animal. Whether the new generation admits it or not. The Rooneys are old school and don't really **** with **** like this. Especially outta the franchise ****ing quarterback.

    He had a chance yesterday to show up presentable and help the organization. Instead he showed up dressed as casual as can be dressed with a stupid ****ing haircut.

    I see the Rooneys suspending him for a game or two with no action by the league.

    Especially if Ben lied to them.
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    Default Re: Steelers ponder suspension of Roethlisberger

    I say suspend his ***, Art. This knucklehead has to understand he is a freakin' adult, making millions of dollars, and not some drunken bar hopping frat boy.

    Maybe 4 to 6 games on the bench will wake this dummy up. If we don't suspend him he will think he dodged another bullet and we will all watch in horror as he is named in a 3rd sexual assualt case. Except this time he will no longer be a Pittsburgh Steeler because he has run out of lives.

    If you want Ben around for the next 10 years "tough love" has to be administered here no matter how much it pains us to watch Dennis Dixon under center.

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    Default Re: Steelers ponder suspension of Roethlisberger

    Quote Originally Posted by rbilak View Post
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    My take on this. Ben met with the Rooney's several times to discuss the incident. You would think Mr. Rooney would know all the details and although upset at hearing them, instead it reads like this is the first he kinew of it and was shocked. This is like when Vick lied to the owner about dogfighting. There should have been zero surprise to Mr. Rooney. Did Ben lie to him? Makes you wonder. Not good for Ben. Also Ben looked ridiculous in that outfit he wore to read his statement. Who the hell is advising him? The same idiot who in his party blocked the bathroom door? If you want to start your reimage, at least come out with a sensible haircut and a nice suit. Way it sounds, 2-4 games in coming at him, enough to wreck a whole season.

    I'm sure when Art was talking to Ben the subject about Ben pounding that ***** and pulling out in the nick of time never came up.

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    Default Re: Steelers ponder suspension of Roethlisberger

    Quote Originally Posted by steeler View Post
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    The guy was CLEARED of all charges, he shouldnt be suspended by the team at all and if he is he can fight it.
    I think fighting it would only make it worse in the organization's eyes.
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    Default Re: Steelers ponder suspension of Roethlisberger

    possibly, but the fact is he could fight it if he wanted to

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    Default Re: Steelers ponder suspension of Roethlisberger

    "I am truly sorry for the disappointment and negative attention I have brought to my family, my teammates and coaches, the Rooneys and the NFL. I understand that the opportunities I have been blessed with are a privilege, and that much is expected of me as the quarterback of Pittsburgh Steelers. I absolutely want to be the leader this team deserves, valued in the community and a role model to kids. I have much work to do to earn this trust, and I am committed to improving and showing everyone my true values.
    Words words words. Let's see some action.

    No more bar hopping with your linemen buddies. More after hours practice throwing a deep ball to Wallace to get some timing down so he doesn't have to wait for the ball to arrive. And get your fat *** in shape before camp.

    Try ****ing a 40 year old once in a while. They're better at it.

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    Default Re: Steelers ponder suspension of Roethlisberger

    Quote Originally Posted by HOGEFAN View Post
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    Words words words. Let's see some action.

    No more bar hopping with your linemen buddies. More after hours practice throwing a deep ball to Wallace to get some timing down so he doesn't have to wait for the ball to arrive. And get your fat *** in shape before camp.

    Try ****ing a 40 year old once in a while. They're better at it.
    And usually more willing.

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    Default Re: Steelers ponder suspension of Roethlisberger

    The guy needs to be hit with a severe message, a suspension with a fine and some counseling. He has to learn and grow up and based on his prepared apology he hasn't, at least I am not convinced. Between Goodell and Art ll, I am sure he will receive quite the *** chewing.
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    Default Re: Steelers ponder suspension of Roethlisberger

    Quote Originally Posted by HOGEFAN View Post
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    Try ****ing a 40 year old once in a while. They're better at it.


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    Default Re: Steelers ponder suspension of Roethlisberger

    Quote Originally Posted by steeler View Post
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    The guy was CLEARED of all charges, he shouldnt be suspended by the team at all and if he is he can fight it.
    That's from a legal standpoint. The Steeler organization does not carry the burden of proof that a DA would carry in a trial. He has created considerable embarrassment to a billion dollar business and a suspension could be in the making and it would be deserved.

    Papillon

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    Default Re: Steelers ponder suspension of Roethlisberger

    On a side note:

    40 year old cougars are highly under-rated friends.
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