Pittsburgh Steelers President Art Rooney II made it clear today at a 2:30 press conference that the Steelers are prepared to take disciplinary action against quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. Rooney indicated that there will only be one course of action and as expected the Steelers, NFL are working together.
“I have made it clear to Ben that his conduct in this incident did not live up to our standards, ” Art Rooney said. “We have made it very clear to Ben that there will be consequences for his actions.”
“I have informed the Commissioner that the Pittsburgh Steelers are prepared to take disciplinary action at this point. However, I want to make clear that any discipline will be agreed to and coordinated between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Commissioner. In other words, there will not be two separate decisions on discipline.”
“Let me say at this point that we believe that each of our players not only has a responsibility to live up to the highest standards on the field, but also to equally high standards off the field. Receiving the support of the Pittsburgh Steelers fans all over the world is something that must be earned.”
Rooney also went into detail about the reason to let Roethlisberger workout with his teammates.
“As you maybe aware Ben has rejoined the team in participating in our off season conditioning program. We allowed Ben to do this after we were convinced that he was sincerely contrite for his past behavior, as well having Ben’s assurance that he is firmly committed to working hard everyday to regain the trust and respect of this organization and Steelers fans.”
“After imposing an appropriate level of discipline and outlining the steps we feel will be necessary to be successful as a player and a person, we intend to allow Ben the opportunity to prove to us he is the teammate and citizen we all believe he is capable of being. And we hope the entire Steelers community will allow Ben the opportunity to prove to them that he deserves their trust and their respect.”
Rooney also discussed the possibility of trading Roethlisberger.
When asked about the possibility by the media, Rooney didn’t exactly rule it out and say for example that Ben is our quarterback.
Rooney briefly said “At this point, we have not discussed a trade with any other clubs” and would not go into any other details.
Rooney also addressed the Santonio Holmes trade for the first time.
“Trading a player or releasing a player is never an easy decision,” Rooney said. “We have to take into account a number of factors. First and foremost, we have to evaluate if a player is truly committed to the standards that we expect. And on occasion when a player makes a mistake we have to evaluate if the player is committed to taking the required steps to improve in the future. To keep our commitment to our fans to putting the best possible football team on the field, we must also evaluate a player’s contribution in the short term and the long term.”
“Clearly, Santonio is a very talented football player. But his multiple violations of league policy and his off-the-field problems led us to conclude that it would be in the best interest of our organization to part ways. I wish Santonio all the best and I hope he’s able to do what’s necessary to be successful both on and off the field.”
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