Leave perfectly sized Ben alone!
After 16 seasons in the NFL, Ben Roethlisberger is no stranger to criticism, but the Steelers quarterback is not happy about the latest fat-shaming controversy incited by NFL insider Jay Glazer.
“I make fun of Ben all the time and he makes fun of me,” Glazer said on “The Jason Smith Show” on Thursday. “We get after each other. But he was honestly upset by this.
“I’ve known Ben for a long time and Ben and I have had our things in the past. Ben and I get after each other and sometimes I get a little trigger-happy wanting to get after Ben.”
The ordeal began on May 5 when Glazer took a jab at Roethlisberger’s dubious workout routine in a mailbag article for The Athletic and called the six-time Pro Bowler “allergic” to fitness.
“[A reader] asked me about something with Ben and I think fitness,” Glazer recounted. “I’m like, ‘Hey, let’s not use the term fitness with Roethlisberger.’ And I started going over his fitness.”
Glazer offered somewhat of a “mea culpa” for the harsh words, but maintains that the statement was an accurate characterization of a typical offseason for the 6-foot-5, 240-pound signal-caller.
“Nothing I said, by the way, was false,” he said. “I’ll never forget when he’d tell, ‘Oh, I had a great offseason, did hot yoga and then golf and beer.’ And that’s pretty much a great offseason for him. But Ben’s different. Listen, he’s a Hall of Fame quarterback. There’s no taking that back. And I’m not saying he wasn’t. He’s not exactly Jack LaLanne, though, let’s be honest.”
Roethlisberger was allegedly offended by the comments because they had cast his rehab in a negative light. The 38-year-old is recovering from surgery he underwent after suffering a season-ending elbow injury in Week 2 of last season season, and intends to return this year.
“He’s rehabbing his butt off and I think it’s the level that Steelers fans would want him to rehab,” Glazer said. “He wants to come back and play and be at a better level. … And, yes, fitness has never been his thing. He’s gotten away with it. But everybody’s killing me, like, I never said he wasn’t rehabbing the elbow, he definitely is rehabbing the elbow and not with yogurt, golf and beer. He’s actually doing it real.”
Glazer also commended Roethlisberger for reaching out via his agent, Ryan Tollner, and later resolving the issue man-to-man.
“I credit him, too, that he called me back about it, or that he reached out because he reached out and then we talked about it,” Glazer said. “As a man, if you’ve got an issue with somebody, you call him. That’s why I called him. He called me back and we handled it and we hashed it out.”