Ben Roethlisberger, the oft-hit and oft-hurt quarterback of the Pittsburgh Steelers, confessed to Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that he does have a tear in his rotator cuff.
He doesn't act as if he's concerned about it, but he wouldn't. Roethlisberger has a reputation as a tough guy, and he thrives on it. His foot could be caught in a bear trap, and he'd show up to practice and say, "What? This? Oh, that's nothing. Just a little new bear trap therapy I'm trying."
Here's what Benjamin said:
"I'm good. It's OK, just sore," he said when asked about his arm injury. "I have a little torn rotator cuff. That doesn't heal. We just have to hope it doesn't tear the rest of the way, according to Doc," he said, laughing.
Haha, said zero Steelers fans.
According to WebMD, small tears in rotator cuffs will heal on their own with rest. That doesn't mean that's the case with Ben — I don't know any details regarding him or his cuff. But he is resting it.
"It's part of getting older, too. If you watch walk-throughs, I used to throw all the time. Now it's just backing off. Now I don't ever throw during walk-throughs. It's less throwing; I think that's smart anyway. As you get older, you just need to take care of yourself whether you're hurt or not."
The big risk with partial tears is that they'll tear completely if they're not rested. That would require surgery and more Byron Leftwich than any of us would care to see. What kind of risk there is of Roethlisberger further tearing his rotator cuff, I haven't a clue.
Ben Roethlisberger can play through injuries. He's a very tough guy — the toughest man in the history of the universe, actually, is the impression I get from Dan Dierdorf.
But the worry here is that it's the beginning of the year. No. 7's going to take his hits, and he's going to get banged up, because that's how he plays. That's what it is to be Ben Roethlisberger. But Steelers fans would at least like him to start the season fresh. The guy can take a beating, but it'll be a lot easier for him to get through it if he waits until the season starts.