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Roethlisberger impressive while in pain

I've been slow to warm up to Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.

After all the distractions this past year, I've stayed away from cheering him.

Before I went to the Steelers-Raiders game at Heinz Field a couple weeks ago, I didn't wear my No. 7 jersey. I just couldn't bring myself to root for him.

After Sunday's win over the Ravens, I'm starting to come around.

Yes, it might be fickle, but you have to give the guy some props simply for what he's been playing through on the field.

Whatever the problem is with his foot, you can clearly tell it's an impediment to his game. On top of that, he played through a broken nose in Sunday's come-from-behind victory.

That's toughness.

Roethlisberger's saying and doing the right things on and off the field. I took notice after the Raiders game when Roethlisberger asked about Richard Seymour's cheap shot. With an open microphone in front of him, Ben stayed above the fray.

Whether he's being coached by a public relations guru or not, that's the right thing to do.

If Roethlisberger and the Steelers continue to win, there will be plenty of more opportunities for him to show off the new, improved person.

Plus, it'll drive those anti-Ben people crazy.

And it'll give me some time to dig out that jersey of mine.

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