Ben Roethlisberger details when he plans to finally shave off his massive beard

Ben Roethlisberger’s beard, once again, went viral this past weekend, when the Steelers’ veteran quarterback posted a video encouraging fans to stay home during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. 

Roethlisberger, who has continued to show signs of progress following last September’s elbow surgery, started growing his beard after his 2019 season was cut short after just two games. Last week, Roethlisberger said that he will shave off his beard as soon as he can throw an NFL-caliber pass, a feat he hopes to achieve sometime over the next month or two. He started throwing again last month after visiting with the doctors that performed his surgery.

Despite the injury, Roethlisberger is confident that he will play up to his usual level of expectation in 2020.

“I have no doubts I’m going to be able to come back and play well — none,” Roethlisberger told Ron Cook of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “I have complete confidence in that. I’m throwing without pain for the first time in years. Some games, I would have a little pain. Some games, I would have a lot of pain. But in the New England game and the Seattle game [last season], it got to be too much. To be able to throw without pain now? That feels nice. That’s a nice feeling. I know I’m not getting any younger, but I feel younger because I don’t have any pain.”

Roethlisberger also assured fans that he has continued to stay in shape after making significant changes to his diet and workout routine during the 2018 offseason. A leaner Roethlisberger went onto lead the league with 5,129 passing yards that season while leading a Steelers offense that scored a franchise-record 53 touchdowns.

“I’ve heard people say I’m fat, and that just blows my mind,” Roethlisberger said. “I’m lighter and in better shape than I was in either of the past two years. I haven’t stopped working out. I normally don’t work out in the offseason, but I’ve been doing everything five days a week with my trainer. Cardio twice a week. Legs twice a week. Upper body twice a week …

“I guess it’s my beard that makes me look heavier. I must have five pounds in that, I know. But I’m not overweight.”

While he continues to do what he can to prepare for next season, the Steelers have been busy re-shaping the roster for 2020. They inked former Pro Bowl tight end Eric Ebron to a two-year, $12 million contract. Pittsburgh also signed former Eagles/Chiefs offensive lineman Stefen Wisniewski, a starter on Kansas City’s 2019 Super Bowl championship team, to a two-year deal shortly after the start of free agency. The Steelers then sent a 2021 fifth-round pick to the Ravens in exchange for veteran defensive tackle Chris Wormley and a 2021 seventh-round pick. Pittsburgh has also signed veteran fullback Derek Watt — the younger brother of T.J. Watt — two a two-year contract.

After missing all but two games last season, it’s safe to say that Roethlisberger is looking forward to resuming his career in 2020. He is also looking forward to parting with his beard. And he’s not the only one.

“I normally don’t have my beard in the offseason, but this is a different offseason,” Roethlisberger  I look at it as my Samson effect. As long as I have it …

“When we were flying to Los Angeles for my surgery, I told my wife I wasn’t going to shave my beard or cut my hair until I can throw an NFL-caliber pass again. She can’t wait. She’s ready for it to come off. Maybe in another month or two.”

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