Top NFL Fantasy Value Quarterbacks – Ben Roethlisberger
The Pittsburgh Steelers were the number one passing team in the NFL a season ago as the club threw for 301 yards per game. Ben Roethlisberger has logged in 12 seasons under center for the team and is coming off one his better seasons as a pro. In 2014 Big Ben completed 67% of his throws for 4952 yards with 32 touchdowns and 9 picks. He ended the year with a quarterback rating of 103.3. Big Ben had a terrific close to the 2014 campaign as the club went 6-2 and he passed for over 2500 yards total in those games. Still good news on the offensive side of the football as Roethlisberger surrendered his lowest sack total in nine years.
Antonio Brown led the Steelers receiving corps as the six year pro caught 129 passes for 1698 yards with 13 touchdowns. Brown is under contract through the 2017 season as he signed a five year extension following his Pro Bowl year of 2012.
Second year man Martavis Bryant put up some impressive numbers for the Steelers in the second half of the year. In ten games he caught 26 passes for 549 yards with eight touchdowns. Bryant averaged 21 yards per catch in his rookie campaign in 2014.
Pittsburgh tight end Heath Miller has been durable for the club. He played in all games in 2014 and has a consecutive game streak of 30 entering the new campaign. The veteran had 66 catches for 761 yards but just three touchdowns. With the Steelers size and length at their wide receiver position it appears Miller is not a main target near the end zone anymore. Miller still is an important piece for moving the sticks in those key third down plays where the tight end can get open over the middle.
In the third round of the draft the Steelers added wide receiver Sammie Coates as another weapon for Roethlisberger in the passing game. He played his college football at Auburn and has a quick burst of speed. His runs after the catches in college resulted in a very high 21 yards per reception mark with the Tigers in 2014. Coates was huge in Auburn’s 2014 game against bitter rival Alabama where he had two receiving touchdowns and 206 receiving yards.
The Steelers hired Todd Haley as the team’s offensive coordinator in 2012. It did not start very well but to Pittsburgh’s credit they stuck with the former Kansas City head coach as their offensive coordinator and he was able to raise Roethlisberger’s game. Big Ben went out of his way to confirm to the media about the good relationship he has with Haley.
The room for improvement will come from red zone efficiency. They put up 27.3 points a game which was seventh best in the NFL a season ago. But their red zone success was just 51.72% ranking in the bottom half of the league at 19th. Haley feels the team may be too reliant on their kicker Shaun Suisham. That is good news for fantasy football draft managers because the club’s offense isn’t content enough with their performance and still looking to improve themselves. During the Steelers OTA’s the club has worked on plays inside the red zone. Specifically, the club worked hard in goal to go situations where the Steelers struggled. The Steelers run game is not very respected so if the club can improve on the ground it opens up play action opportunities for Big Ben to complete more touchdown passes.
The Steelers third year running back Le’Veon Bell will have to be sidelined for three games during the beginning of the 2015 season with a substance abuse suspension. He was a key cog for Big Ben in the passing game as the running back caught 83 passes for 48 yards and three touchdowns. Bell averaged over 10 yards per reception a season ago. Ten year veteran DeAngelo Williams comes over from the Carolina Panthers in free agency. He was injury prone in 2014 as he missed ten games due to various injuries. He wasn’t asked to do much for the Panthers in the passing game during his tenure with the club.
Ben Roethlisberger 2015 Fantasy Football Draft Recommendation: