Ravens being champs irks Roethlisberger

Ravens being champs irks Roethlisberger
July 3, 2013, 1:15 pm
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Ray Rice is ready to go

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco, right, congratulates Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger after the Steelers beat the Ravens 31-24 in an NFL divisional football game in Pittsburgh, Saturday, Jan. 15, 2011.

(AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

Watching the Ravens win the Super Bowl was hard for Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. He admitted it during an interview with 7msport.com in England, during a visit to promote the Steelers-Vikings game in London on Sept. 29.

“Anytime we don’t win the Super Bowl it motivates you,” Roethlisberger said. “But especially someone in the division, someone like Baltimore. The Steeler-Baltimore rivalry is one of the best in all of sports. For them to win it kind of motivates us to come out this year and be as good as we can be.’’

This might be the first time that Roethlisberger feels envious of Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco. Roethlisberger has won two Super Bowls, but Flacco was MVP of the most recent one. Flacco’s star has never been brighter. On The NFL Network’s “Top 100” player list for 2013, Flacco ranked No. 19, while Roethlisberger ranked No. 61.

Roethlisberger’s durability has become a concern. While Flacco has never missed a start in five seasons, Roethlisberger has played 16 regular-season games just once during his nine-year career.

Asked how he felt after offseason knee surgery, Roethlisberger said, “It feels better than ever, feels like a brand new knee, I feel younger than ever.”

The Steelers will need a healthy Roethlisberger to dethrone the Ravens as champs of the AFC North. The road to the division title used to go through Pittsburgh. Now it goes through Baltimore.