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In sign of progress, Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger throws to teammates, trims beard

JOE RUTTER
(Greensburg) Tribune-Review (TNS)
Ben Roethlisberger

The beard isn’t exactly sheared, but it is neatly trimmed.

Before undergoing right elbow surgery in September, Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger said he wouldn’t cut his hair or shave until he was able to throw a “legit NFL pass” to one of his teammates.

That time apparently occurred over the weekend.

The Steelers released a video Monday afternoon, courtesy of Roethlisberger’s BigBen7.com web site, that showed Roethlisberger recently throwing passes to teammates JuJu Smith-Schuster, James Conner and Ryan Switzer.

“Feels good to be back out there with my guys,” was the caption on the video.

The event was filmed at Quaker Valley High School’s Chuck Knox Stadium.

“He’s back. Stay tuned,” Smith-Schuster said into the camera after catching a pass.

Near the conclusion of the 38-second video, Roethlisberger is shown in a stylist’s chair with his hair cut and someone using scissors to touch up his neatly trimmed beard.

It is not known where Roethlisberger received the makeover, but if it was in Pennsylvania, it may have been in violation of Gov. Tom Wolf’s order to keep salons closed until counties are permitted to enter the “green phase” of reopening during the coronavirus pandemic. Allegheny County and surrounding counties just entered the yellow phase on Friday.

Roethlisberger had his 2019 season, the 16th of his NFL career, cut short after 62 passes and six quarters because of right elbow pain. He underwent surgery in which three tendons reportedly were reattached.

Without Roethlisberger, the Steelers finished 8-8, losing their final three games with undrafted free agent Devlin Hodges starting. The Steelers did not acquire a quarterback in free agency or the draft and will enter the 2020 season with Mason Rudolph backing up Roethlisberger.

Coach Mike Tomlin addressed Roethlisberger’s rehabilitation last week in a chat with Steelers Nation Huddle members.

“He’s doing great thus far,” Tomlin said. “He’s in great physical condition. Rehabilitation in regards to the injury itself is going well. I hear nothing but positive reports from that standpoint. There have been no bumps in the road.”

Roethlisberger began a light throwing regimen in February. He turned 38 in March and is preparing to play out his contract which runs through the 2021 season.

“The fact the injury happened so early in 2019, it’s probably an asset to him and to us as we push into 2020,” Tomlin said. “I think everyone is comfortable where things are. We’re excited about him and what he’s going to do for us this year.”