Big Ben Jr. arrives as the newest addition to Steeler Nation
Baby Ben arrived just in time to enjoy his first Thanksgiving dinner.
Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and wife, Ashley, welcomed Benjamin Roethlisberger Jr. into the world at 10:06 p.m. Wednesday — the first child for the couple, who were married nearly 18 months ago.
Roethlisberger posted a message on his web page Thursday reading: “Ashley and I welcomed a healthy, beautiful baby boy into this world. Benjamin Jr. is 7 lbs., 1 oz. and is 191⁄2 inches long. Both mom and baby are doing well.
“We want to thank everyone for their thoughts and prayers. It really means a lot to us. God is so good! We will have pictures to post this weekend. We hope you have a very Happy Thanksgiving — Ben, Ashley and Benjamin.”
Fittingly, the birth weight — a tad over 7 pounds — matches Roethlisberger's No. 7 jersey.
Less than 12 hours after the delivery, the proud papa was back at the Steelers' South Side offices, showing off pictures of his first-born to his teammates and watching most of the team's holiday practice.
“I've never seen him smile that much,” wide receiver Mike Wallace said. “I'm very, very happy for him, first and foremost that he had a healthy kid and everything's good.”
Lineman Willie Colon, one of Roethlisberger's closest friends on the team, said the quarterback successfully hid his nervousness for weeks.
“Ah, man, I'm so happy for him. He's been in anticipation of this for so long. It was kind of under his skin, but he never really talked about it,” Colon said. “He wanted to keep it private. But he really wanted it. And I'm really, really happy for him.”
Roethlisberger promised to miss a Steelers game if his wife gave birth on a game day, but that didn't occur. Roethlisberger is healing from rib and shoulder-related injuries that will sideline him for a second consecutive game Sunday in Cleveland.
“I'm most happy it wasn't during a game or during that time he was forced to have to make a choice,” Colon said.
Multiple teammates agree that Baby Ben closely resembles Dad.
“I told him it looks exactly like him. Poor kid!” Colon said, laughing out loud. “No, I'm just kidding. I'm really happy.”
Lineman Max Starks, the father of a daughter born only a couple of weeks ago, has some advice for the Steelers' newest dad.
“Try to sleep when you can,” Starks said.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.