Ben Roethlisberger had effusive praise for the New England Patriots during a press conference on Wednesday morning, calling the franchise “the gold standard” and “the best in the world.”
And while the Steelers quarterback said all the right things – and appeared unfailingly genuine in his compliments for the Patriots and their quarterback, Tom Brady — Roethlisberger made it clear he didn't appreciate the words of New England receiver Julian Edelman.
Edelman on Tuesday said, “That's how that team is run,” in referring to Antonio Brown's live video broadcast of the Steelers' postgame locker room following their playoff win at Kansas City on Sunday.
Edelman said, “I personally don't think that would be something that would happen in our locker room.”
Roethlisberger was asked his thoughts on Edelman's comments.
“I don't need to speak much; we've got the trophies out there,” Roethlisberger said, referring to the six Lombardi Trophies housed in a room just behind the wall where he was speaking at a podium.
Roethlisberger went on to explain that he has a weekly meeting with Steelers owner and chairman Dan Rooney. The 13-year veteran quarterback seemed to take offense to Edelman's comment specifically because they might be interpreted as a shot at the Rooney family, whom Roethlisberger called “the best (owners) in the business.”
“They're family to us, and I'm sure if (Edelman) talked to his owner he would say the same thing about the Rooneys,” Roethlisberger said. “Anybody in here or in the football world or in the regular world who knows the Rooneys know what they are and what they stand for. And it's a blessing to call them family.
“I have played with guys who have come from other teams, and they looked shocked when they see our owners – whether it's Mr. Rooney (Dan) or Art – walking around practice. They don't ever see their owners. We see our owners every single day. And I think it's just a blessing to know that they care about us. And that that's one of the reasons we want to go win.”
To win Sunday in the AFC championship at New England and advance to the franchise's ninth Super Bowl, Roethlisberger said the Steelers “are gonna have to be as good as we've ever been.”
“They're the best in the world,” Roethlisberger said of the Patriots. “They're the gold standard, if you will, so you want to have opportunity to go up and play the best. It would be an awesome challenge for us.”
Roethlisberger similarly called Brady, “the best of all time.” Asked if he considered himself in the same company as Brady, Roethlisberger said, “Not until I get the (number of) Super Bowl (wins) he has.”
Brady is tied with former Steeler Terry Bradshaw and Monongahela native Joe Montana with four Super Bowl victories as a starting quarterback. Roethlisberger was the Steelers' quarterback for two Super Bowl wins – after the 2005 and 2008 seasons.