Ben Roethlisberger is prepared to walk away form the only franchise he's ever played for in professional football. Roethlisberger has privately told teammates and some members of the Pittsburgh Steelers organization that he expects 2021 to be his final year with the franchise, per ESPN's Adam Schefter.
Roethlisberger, who is in the final season of a restructured two-year contract with the Steelers, has played 18 seasons with the franchise since being drafted by Pittsburgh in 2004. The 39-year-old Roethlisberger didn't give any inclination of retiring from football, although that remains a possibility if he chooses this season to be his last. Per Schefter, it's "highly unlikely" Roethlisberger ends up with another team -- as the Steelers quarterback is treating the remainder of this season as the final six games of his career (assuming Pittsburgh doesn't make the postseason).
Roethlisberger holds all the major Steelers' passing records, including passing yards (62.870), touchdown passes (410), passer rating (93.8) and completion percentage (64.4). His 161 wins with the Steelers are the most for any quarterback in franchise history. Roethlisberger is sixth on the all-time list in passing yards and eighth in touchdown passes, while his 38 fourth-quarter comebacks are the third-most in NFL history behind Tom Brady (43) and Peyton Manning (41). He's also fifth all-time in quarterback wins.
Roethlisberger has two Super Bowl victories with the Steelers, one of 12 quarterbacks with multiple Super Bowl victories. His 13 playoff victories are tied with Brett Favre for seventh-most in NFL history while his 5,757 passing yards in the postseason are the fifth-most by a quarterback and his 34 touchdown passes are seventh.
The Steelers are currently 5-5-1 and sitting in last place of the AFC North. They are one of 12 teams with a .500-or-better record in the AFC and are a half game behind Las Vegas for the final playoff spot in the conference. If Pittsburgh can make a run, Roethlisberger can have what could be a final shot at getting his third Super Bowl title.