Ben Roethlisberger Shows He Can Punt
Here's a little-known fact about Ben Roethlisberger: In 2002, while playing at Miami of Ohio, he punted three times in a game against Toledo. He landed all three punts inside the 20-yard line and was named the MAC East Special Teams Player of the Week for his efforts.
Fast forward to 2009, and Big Ben can still boot it. During the first quarter of today's Steelers-Chargers divisional playoff game, Roethlisberger lined up in the shotgun on a fourth-and-8 from the Chargers' 34-yard line, as if the Steelers were going to go for it. But instead, he backed up a little farther from the line of scrimmage than usual and punted the ball. It wasn't the prettiest punt, but it got the job done, rolling to a stop at the Chargers' 9-yard line.
Roethlisberger has punted before in the NFL; he had two punts in the 2005 regular season. Under the right circumstances, a quick kick from a quarterback can be a great tool, and the Steelers are smart to use it.
Meanwhile, the Chargers' punter, Mike Scifres, boomed a beauty of a kick after the Chargers went three-and-out on their next possession. Unfortunately for San Diego, Steelers return man Santonio Holmes took it 67 yards to the house, and late in the first quarter it's tied 7-7.