Ben Roethlisberger On Steelers Drafting Mason Rudolph: 'I Was Surprised'

Ben Roethlisberger says he plans to play'three to five more years

The Pittsburgh Steelers might have picked a quarterback in last week's National Football League draft, but Ben Roethlisberger has no intention of making way for a young prospect just yet. Since Big Ben joined the team in 2004, Pittsburgh also selected 2006 fifth-round pick Omar Jacobs and 2008 fifth-rounder Dennis Dixon.

"I was surprised when they took a quarterback because I thought that maybe in the third round, you know you can get some really good football players that can help this team now", Roethlisberger said. Roethlisberger has played all 16 games just three times in 14 pro seasons, despite playing at least 12 games each year. I just don't know how backing up or being a third [string] - well, who knows where he's going to fall on the depth chart - helps us win now. If they feel like he can help our team, so be it.

"I went and talked to [team officials] and basically said, 'Listen, I can't control - barring major injuries, barring things at home, and things out of your control - the way my body feels". Roethlisberger was speaking on his radio show where his criticism of teammates and coaches often passes without follow-up questions. Pittsburgh then took Washington's college teammate, Mason Rudolph, in the middle of Round 3, but Roethlisberger said it probably will be a while before the rookie QB gets his shot to start. The way our O-line is put together, as good as they are, they kept me healthy as can be the last couple years.

"I'll still take it one year at a time and give it everything I have that one year", Roethlisberger added, "but that's what I felt comfortable in telling [the front office]".

A generous assessment of Roethlisberger's reaction would concede that he's simply being overprotective of his mates in the 2017 quarterback room, Jones and Dobbs.

Rudolph posted a 32-9 mark as a starter at Oklahoma State and owns 54 school records, including single-season passing yards (4,553) and career passing yards (13,618), passing touchdowns (90) and pass efficiency (63.2 percent).

"I think the biggest thing is I need to get myself prepared to play, right?" I assume Landry's still the two, I don't really know and Josh, same thing.

The Pittsburgh Steelers are hoping they found their quarterback of the future in Mason Rudolph.

Asked about mentoring Rudolph, Roethlisberger was blunt.

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