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Roethlisberger was set to hit free agency after the 2015 season, but there was never really a doubt that the two sides would come to terms.
"I've always said this is where I want to be." Roethlisberger told reporters gathered at the press conference announcing the deal. “I’m just happy that I can be here."
Steelers President Art Rooney II said the team believes that an elite quarterback is a necessity; clearly they view Roethlisberger as that.
“Having Ben has been a great run that we’ve had, so we’re really excited to continue the opportunity that having a player like Ben gives us to be competitive and to try and compete for championships. There’s no other way to do it these days in the league,” Rooney said.
Roethlisberger was overdue for a contract upgrade after watching guys like Joe Flacco, Andy Dalton and Jay Cutler move past him in compensation. Roethlisberger was due $11.6 million in 2015, a number that could double under this new contract.
His accomplishments in the league have been impressive enough. Among the highlights:
Roethlisberger became the youngest starting quarterback in NFL history to win a Super Bowl when the Steelers defeated the Seattle Seahawks 21-10 in Super Bowl XL. He was just 23 years old.
Roethlisberger set an NFL record for the most touchdown passes in a two-game span when he threw for 12 touchdown passes last season, six each in wins over the Indianapolis Colts and the Baltimore Ravens.
In his 11 seasons with the Steelers he has led the team to two Super Bowl victories, three AFC Championships and five divisional titles.
Roethlisberger holds numerous franchise records for his regular-season performances, including passing touchdowns (251), passing yards (39,057), passer rating (93.9), completions (3,157), pass attempts (4,954), completion percentage (63.7), yards per attempt (7.9), 300-yard passing games (37) and 3,000-yard passing seasons (9).
Roethlisberger became the first quarterback in NFL history to throw for 500 yards in multiple games when he passed for 522 yards against the Colts. He previously threw for 500 yards when he passed for 503 yards and three touchdowns against the Green Bay Packers in 2009. Fifteen quarterbacks have thrown for 500 yards in one game.
Roethlisberger is just the fourth quarterback in NFL history to win 100 games in his first 150 career starts. The other three quarterbacks are Tom Brady, Joe Montana and Terry Bradshaw.
With his 4,962 yards passing in 2014, Roethlisberger became one of six quarterback in NFL history to record at least 3,000 passing yards in nine consecutive seasons. The others to do it include Brett Favre, Peyton Manning, Drew Brees, Eli Manning and Dan Marino.
His 7.9 yards-per-attempt average is sixth in NFL history and second among active players.
And as NFL.com's Gregg Rosenthal notes, despite predictions that Roethlisberger could break down as he gets older because of his style of play, the reality is that he's playing at the same high level as ever. He's not nearly as nimble as he once was, but the mental side of his game has vastly improved.
The Steelers take advantage of his vertical accuracy in Todd Haley's offense while also letting him make more decisions behind the line of scrimmage.
Much like Brady, Roethlisberger has actually improved since winning his early titles. With Antonio Brown, Le'Veon Bell, Martavis Bryant and Heath Miller catching passes, the Steelers' offense is more loaded than it's ever been in Roethlisberger's career. The team’s offensive line is also doing a better job of pass protection.
For what it's worth, Rosenthal pointed out that Roethlisberger is the first of the triumvirate of quarterbacks drafted in 2004 to receive a second megadeal. Roethlisberger nearly played out the entire eight-year, $102 million contract he signed back in 2008. Now Philip Rivers and Eli Manning are coming up on their deals and figure to get similarly big extensions.
UPDATE: According to NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, the new contract is worth $99 million and can escalate to $108 million.