Art Rooney II would like Ben Roethlisberger back, need to work out contract

Steelers president Art Rooney has released a statement about Tuesday’s meeting with quarterback Ben Roethlisberger about Roethlisberger’s return for the 2021 season.

Roethlisberger’s agent Ryan Tollner said Tuesday that Rooney expressed a desire to have the quarterback back for an 18th season in Pittsburgh. Rooney confirmed that on Wednesday while noting that there’s still some work to do to ensure that he remains with the Steelers.

“Ben Roethlisberger and I met yesterday morning and we had a productive meeting,” Rooney said. “We were able to discuss a lot of things that relate to where we are and where we want to go. Ben assured me that he is committed to coming back to help us win, and I told Ben that we would like to have him back to help us win a championship. We both understand the next step is to work out Ben’s contract situation.”

Roethlisberger is set to have a cap number of $41.25 million in 2021. That could be addressed with an extension that converts most of his $19 million in compensation into a signing bonus while tacking dummy years onto his pact in order to spread that hit out over several years.

That’s a rather straightforward way of handling the contract situation that could be handled without much stress. Things would get more complicated if the Steelers would prefer to pare down that compensation without kicking too much of the can further down the road.