Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger reportedly may ask for a trade in the offseason, and the Arizona Cardinals have surfaced as a legitimate destination.
NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport said Roethlisberger is expected to approach the organization about a trade after the season ends. The Steelers are in the midst of a troubling campaign, entering Sunday’s game against the Buffalo Bills with a 2-6 record.
A representative of two-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback denied Rapoport’s report on Sunday, saying Roethlisberger’s “roots are set firmly in Pittsburgh.”
CBS Sports says Big Ben’s contract runs through the end of the 2015 season.
His cap hit is $17.9 million in ’14 and $17.4 million the following year. And if he were traded in the offseason the Steelers would eat more than $11 million in dead money, a huge deterent for an already cap-strapped organizaiton.
NFL Network’s Mike Silver says the 31-year-old quarterback wants to finish his career with the Steelers, but if the team does decide to field trades for him, look for Arizona to inquire. Roethlisberger may look to reunite with his former offensive coordinator, Bruce Arians, who is now the Cardinals head coach. CBS Sports says the two are “good friends,” as well.
Rapoport said a Steelers source told him the team would have to get a franchise quarterback in exchange if it were to deal the two-time Pro Bowler.
Roethlisberger has thrown for 2,330 yards, 12 touchdowns and nine interceptions on 64.9 percent passing in the first eight games of 2013.