Raiders, Rams, Jaguars and Bills all out of the running for Big Ben

At the start of the week, there was speculation that the Raiders, Rams, Jaguars and Bills were all trade possibilities for Steelers’ quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. But after the Rams and Bills both dropped out of the running on Wednesday, the Jaguars and Raiders followed suit today and now the Steelers don’t appear to have any viable trade partners heading into tonight’s draft.

In reality, the Raiders were the only team that made sense, because they’re the only team that wouldn’t care about Big Ben’s contract, off-field baggage and six-game suspension at the start of next season. There should be no bigger wake up call to a player then when even Al Davis doesn’t want you. (Actually, Davis probably doesn’t want Roethlisberger because he doesn’t want to admit that he made a colossal mistake by drafting JaMarcus Russell four years ago.)

According to ESPN’s John Clayton, the Cardinals have contacted the Steelers about a possible trade, but did not make an offer that would lead to a deal getting done soon. Ken Whisenhunt was Big Ben’s offensive coordinator for three years in Pittsburgh, so it would make sense that Arizona would be interested. But at the end of the day, Roethlisberger will likely still be a Steeler in 2010.

For now, the only thing Pittsburgh can do is ride out Ben’s suspension and hope he learns something from it. They’ll prepare for Week 1 with Bryon Leftwich and Dennis Dixon competing for the starting job, then figure out Roethlisberger’s future at a later time.

It could be a rough year in the “Steel City.”

Photo from fOTOGLIF

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