Steelers reeling as Roethlisberger ruled out for season
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger was ruled out for the rest of the NFL season on Monday, a day after suffering an elbow injury in his team's loss to the Seattle Seahawks.
The 37-year-old two-time Super Bowl champion was injured in the first half of the Steelers' home loss to Seattle, clutching his right elbow after unleashing a pass.
Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin said Roethlisberger had undergone an MRI scan on Sunday which determined that surgery was required.
"We expect the surgery will be scheduled for this week," Tomlin said in a statement.
"He will be placed on our Reserve/Injured List and is out for the season."
Roethlisberger, who had flirted with retirement in 2017 before deciding to continue his career, vowed to come back from the injury.
"This is shocking and heartbreaking for me, to miss this much of a season and feel like I am letting down so many people," said Roethlisberger, who led the Steelers to Super Bowl wins in 2006 and 2009.
Hall of Famer Deion Sanders last week said he expected Roethlisberger to retire before the end of the 2019 season.
But the Steelers icon insisted on Monday he would return to see out the final years of his contract, which runs through the 2021 season.
"I am completely determined to battle through this challenge and come back stronger than ever next season," he added.
"The Steelers committed three years to me this offseason and I fully intend to honor my contract and reward them with championship level play. I love this game, my teammates, the Steelers organisation and fans, and I feel in my heart I have a lot left to give."
The loss of Roethlisberger is a devastating blow for the Steelers, who are winless after two games and are also adjusting to the departure of star receiver Antonio Brown at the end of last season.
Roethlisberger was replaced by understudy Mason Rudolph on Sunday.
Rudolph, chosen by the Steelers in the third round of the 2018 Draft, will take over for the remainder of the season.
"It's a crazy turn of events," Rudolph said on Monday. "I am excited to step up. That's what backups do. That is what I have done my that entire career, whether it be high school, college or now. Nothing different for me."
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