Ben: 'I know I can play better'

Ben Roethlisberger is a bit bruised this week after suffering a hip injury against the Packers, but while he might be feeling some aches and pains, he isn't making excuses.

Roethlisberger isn't pointing to the injury to explain any issues with his play, knowing that he just has to continue to perform better each week.

"It's pretty sore. It's just something we've all got to deal with when we play this game of football," said Roethlisberger on Wednesday morning, also indicating his plan is to play on Sunday against the Denver Broncos. "I'm not going to make excuses, but as a quarterback there's so much involved in your lower body. People probably think as a quarterback or as a thrower it's how's your arm doing. Your arm is a small part compared to the whole package, just your core, your lower body.

"I've got to find ways to be better with my lower body, going back and watching the game. A lot of the throws that I missed were missed because my lower body wasn't in sync. Over striding, not stepping towards my target. Things that mechanically I know I can fix and need to fix. Obviously when you're dealing with pain it's harder to get through those things, but nothing I can't get through and I'll work to get through.

"I think there is some compensating that happens when you can't drive into a throw, but once again I'm not going to make excuses. I've been doing this a long time, played through lower body injuries before so that's things I need to get better with."

He is hoping it starts Sunday against the Broncos, a team that is coming off a loss to the Baltimore Ravens, but sporting a 3-1 record.

"We know it's early. We played some good football teams," said Roethlisberger. "We feel like we're making some progress and we just have to find a way at the end of the game to have a 'W' on the board. You can play well and all those things and get better, but at the end of the day you want to win the football game. That's what we have to do, and we start this week at home against a good team."

One area where Roethlisberger has seen improvement is in the run game. Yes, the Steelers are 30th in the NFL in rushing, but he agrees with Coach Mike Tomlin who also said he sees progress in the ground game.

"We started running the ball a little better last week," said Roethlisberger. "I think that was encouraging. I think the passing game showed some (improvement). We went down the field and scored on the opening drive, had the deep ball. But still missing a couple things here and there. But in terms of running the ball and kind of 'quote unquote' splash plays in the run game I think that's starting to show a little more."

The most important aspect in any improvement is a belief that improvement can happen, and that is something Roethlisberger isn't lacking.

"I know that I can play better football," said Roethlisberger. "I believe in myself. I know that no matter what's going on, I'm going to fight my butt off to get a win. If that's the way that I need to lead right now by showing these guys that I'm going to do everything I can to win a football game, then I'll keep doing that.

"We're not going to panic. We're just going to get ready for a challenge this week."

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