Eager Eagles aim to take down Roethlisberger

Associated Press  |  Last updated October 04, 2012
For a big guy, Ben Roethlisberger goes down quite a bit. Roethlisberger has been sacked an NFL-high 177 times since 2008, including eight times in his last regular-season game against the Philadelphia Eagles four years ago. That beating is fresh on Roethlisberger's mind as the Pittsburgh Steelers (1-2) prepare to host the Eagles (3-1) on Sunday. Byron Leftwich had to finish up a 15-6 loss in Philadelphia on Sept. 21, 2008 after Roethlisberger took a hard hit from Brian Dawkins in the fourth quarter. ''They got after us and sacked me a bunch,'' Roethlisberger said. ''It was a very frustrating game. I remember after that game going to one of my teammate's houses and saying `I don't know if I can do this much longer.' They wreak havoc on you and they create a lot of issues.'' Roethlisberger didn't quit, of course. He was back on the field the following week for an overtime victory over Baltimore, and he wound up leading the Steelers to their second Super Bowl championship in four years that season. ''I believe,'' he said, ''that year ended up pretty good for us.'' Despite knocking Roethlisberger around in their last meeting, don't tell the Eagles he's easy to bring down. At 6-foot-5 and 241 pounds, Roethlisberger is one of the biggest quarterbacks in the league. To hear some of the Eagles, you'd think Roethlisberger was a defensive lineman. ''He's about 260, 270 pounds, so arm tackles are not going to tackle him in the pocket. Grabbing one leg or something like that won't work against him,'' linebacker Jamar Chaney said. ''Most quarterbacks, you probably can do that, but with him you can't. When he gets outside the pocket, some of their receivers just take off down the field and he just throws it up.'' Two-time Pro Bowl defensive end Trent Cole is the only one of the six players who sacked Roethlisberger four years ago still with the Eagles. He agrees with Chaney. ''He's a big guy. You can't tackle him low, so you have to tackle him high,'' Cole said. ''That's one of the keys to getting him on the ground.'' If they don't, Roethlisberger can cause several problems for defensive backs. Though he's certainly not in the scrambling class of Michael Vick, Robert Griffin III or Cam Newton, Roethlisberger has a knack for escaping trouble and turning potential losses into big gains. Many of those long pass plays occur when he's moving out of the pocket and throwing down field to a receiver that's wide open because the defenders came up to try to make a tackle on Roethlisberger. ''He extends plays, he's very strong in the pocket, and he has mobility,'' Eagles coach Andy Reid said. ''He always keeps his eyes down the field. He keeps every play alive. As a secondary player, you better continue to cover your player until the play is history and it's over, or he's going to make you pay for it.'' The Eagles are having trouble sacking quarterbacks smaller than Roethlisberger. After finishing tied for the league lead with 50 sacks last year, they had only seven in the first month. The Eagles not only didn't sack Eli Manning in a 19-17 win over the New York Giants last Sunday, but they didn't even register a hit on him. Cole had 11 sacks last year and Jason Babin had 18 as both speedy ends thrived in defensive line coach Jim Washburn's wide-nine system. But Cole and Babin have four combined sacks so far. Maybe seeing Roethlisberger will spark a breakout game. ''It's coming,'' Cole said. ''I'm going to let you know it's coming. We're going to keep working hard at what we're doing. We're having some great practices and keep digging and trying. It's going to come, it's going to pop. We just have leaders who keep working hard and doing what we're doing, trying to win games and it will come.'' --- Follow Rob Maaddi on Twitter: https://twitter.com/RobMaaddi --- Online: http://pro32.ap.org/poll and http://twitter.com/AP-NFL
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Cubs trade for Chapman a risk, but potential payoff too hard to ignore

White Sox fan wears a fantastic taped-up Chris Sale jersey

Wisconsin kicker will wear 27 to honor Nebraska's Sam Foltz

Dennis Schroder wears disguise to play in German streetball tournament

Browns indicate they will give Josh Gordon another chance

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Prince Fielder to undergo season-ending neck surgery

Eagles want Carson Wentz to be 'starter ready' Week 1

Report: 49ers concerned Anthony Davis will quit again

Did Manning hurt NFLPA's case in HGH investigations?

Report: Steinbrenner won't allow fire sale, wants to make playoffs

Report: Dion Waiters agrees to one-year deal with Heat

Dion Waiters' deal signals the end of the 2016 money grab

Tom Jackson could leave ESPN after almost three decades

Cavs sign coach Tyronn Lue to a five-year extension

More than 10,000 people registered for Jaguars Pokemon Go night

NFL issues new concussion protocol

Angels listening to offers on Hector Santiago

Five U.S. Olympians favored to win multiple gold medals

Kevin Durant’s OKC restaurant will be closed, rebranded

Lamar Odom said to be held back by one 'toxic friend'

Mario Balotelli crashes Liverpool fans' wedding

Michael Vick: I used to feel I was 'dominating too much'

WATCH: Astros, Rangers minor leaguers get into brawl

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Five U.S. Olympians favored to win multiple gold medals

WATCH: What teams should join the Big 12?

One Gotta Go: Do NBA players really love NBA2K?

Effect of ban on Russia could span beyond the Olympic Games

One Gotta Go: NBA players hate Facebook too

QUIZ: Name every city to host the NBA All-Star Game

One Gotta Go: NBA players settle the fast food beef

One Gotta Go: NBA players make tough choices on their favorite rappers

One Gotta Go: NBA Summer League is not about that Game of Thrones life

The top NHL free agents available as offseason winds down

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker