Colin Cowherd shares the most important aspect of Big Ben’s influence in Pittsburgh

Colin Cowherd talks Ben Roethlisberger and the Pittsburgh Steelers going into this weekend's playoff matchup with the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Hide Transcript

- You know that segment we do where Colin was right, where Colin was wrong? This-- I know I don't do that, you know, once we get out of football season--

ANNOUNCER: Where Colin was right?

- Yeah. I was right on this one. He never wanted to retire. He did what people do in relationships. For four years, he complained about the coaching. What he was complaining about was Todd Haley, the offensive coordinator, who's been in two reported bar fights. Who has a reputation as overly intense and confrontational.

Now the rumor is, Haley is going to be out of there. Now he suddenly doesn't want to retire, OK? That's what guys do. I don't know-- I won't speak for women. But we complain, complain, complain, complain, and then, if you don't comply or listen to us, we threaten to leave.

He was never going to retire. He never wanted to retire. He wanted to get rid of Todd Haley, who's a yeller and screamer. And as Bruce Arians told me earlier this week on our show, we know that Big Ben doesn't like to be yelled at. Peyton Manning handles it. Andrew Luck handles it. Big Ben doesn't like it.

So Big Ben suddenly, today, is like, you know, I'm not going to retire. Nor should he. And Brees isn't going to retire, and nor should he.

We always talk about Brady retirement. Big Ben, you don't retire, pal. You're still amazing. I'm going to show you Big Ben's influence because it's amazing how many people now are saying, whoa, he was terrible against the Jags. If he loses again-- let me show you influence. This is what you call influence.

So in my entire life, the AFC North-- it used to be called the AFC Central. And then, you know, a few years ago, they changed it to the AFC North. It's always been, like, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, then Baltimore comes along. It's been the black and blue division. It's been the tough guy division.

The stars are defensive players like Ray Lewis, Troy Polamalu. It's defensive guys. Dunlap for Cincinnati. Even today, Baltimore, Cincinnati, most of the big stars in the division on their team are defensive-minded guys.

Now think about Ben's influence. In the '70s, the Pittsburgh Steelers were not only the best team, they were the number one defensive brand in professional football in America. You said Pittsburgh Steelers, it was defense. I mean, they had-- you could have quarterback-- it was defense.

In the '80s, in the '90s, Dick LeBeau, defense. From '93 to 2012-- 20 years-- Steelers were virtually always a top-10 defense. This has been-- not every year. There's been a year the Bears were great or the Broncos were great, or the Ravens were great.

In my lifetime, 40 years of watching NFL, the number one defensive brand in the National Football League has been the Pittsburgh Steelers. And then Big Ben comes around, OK? Big Ben comes around and there's Joey Porter and Harrison and Troy, and they get older.

But have you noticed something about Pittsburgh now? The number one defensive brand for 40 years in the NFL. Who are their stars now, all the time? It was Santonio Holmes, Le'Veon Bell, Mike Wallace, Antwaan Randle El, Emmanuel Sanders.

Now they have a new one. JuJu Smith-Schuster is their latest star. Are you seeing a pattern here? What is the one team-- and I've said this, Christine, probably five times over the last two years. What is the one team that seems to never miss when drafting one position? Steelers, wide receivers.

You think that has anything to do with Big Ben throwing the ball? Every Steeler receiver-- and then Mike Wallace leaves, disappears. Emmanuel Sanders leaves, gets Peyton. But then he's not as big a deal. Santonio Holmes leaves, never the same player.

The only other team in the NFL that always seems to find these great wide receivers that we never watched in college-- Davante Adams and Jordy Nelson and Greg Jennings-- is the Green Bay Packers. And Aaron Rodgers is the reason why. If Davonte Adams was in Jacksonville, you wouldn't know who he is. If he was in Cleveland, you wouldn't know who he is. Mm-hmm. Yeah.

You want to know Big Ben's influence? He inherits the number one defensive brand in the sport in the black and blue division. And Pittsburgh, now, is considered an offensive machine because of Big Ben. OK? Because of Big Ben.

Because of Big Ben, they're the one team that drafts this one position. By the way, wide receiver's a hard position. Bill Belichick is horrible at drafting wide receivers. Terrible. But these two teams do it really, really well-- Green Bay and the Pittsburgh Steelers.

And the reason, and the only reason-- and they just did it again with a second-round kid named JuJu Smith-Schuster-- nothing against that kid-- Big Ben and Aaron Rodgers. Notably, this weekend, Big Ben is the reason why.

When you can inherit a brand in a division in a sport known for one thing and now, it's the opposite-- the only thing we questioned this weekend is, the rest of the way is, can that Steeler defense stop Brady? Could that Steeler defense eventually stop Brees? Could it stop Atlanta? We don't worry about the offense.

More The Herd With Colin Cowherd Videos

More The Herd With Colin Cowherd Videos»