I am a born and raised Pittsburgher. A die-hard Steelers fan. So naturally it pains me to deal with this situation.
I am not here to write to you how this situation could have been avoided, but why.
The Pittsburgh Steelers, Ben, is not just a team. It embodies the blue-collar, work-hard-play-hard, in-your-face mentality of the city. Pittsburgh does work. Most of the time it doesn’t get the news or the accolades it deserves. But that’s okay, because it’ll continue doing business-as-usual.
So Ben, what the hell are you thinking?
Let’s get some things out the way. First, thank you for not messing up too much on your first Super Bowl. The Team won that one. Secondly, thank you for that unreal last drive in your second Super Bowl run- what a catch!
Now, apparently some facts about the Steelers escaped that rattled brain of yours. Allow me to plug them back in:
1.You became a Steeler because you fit IN the Steelers system. Not because you ARE the system. Do not get that twisted.
2. Because the team represents the city, and you unfortunately became the face of the team, you represent Pittsburgh. Your actions speak much louder than you think.
You see Ben, the Pittsburgh Steelers and the NFL in general are what we call brands. Brands can be associated with personalities, character traits, and other descriptions. For example, the Rooney family created the Steelers brand. Goodell is trying to manage the NFL brand.
And you Ben, are doing a fantastic job trying to destroy both.
Now as a native child of the city and a fan of the team, you have put me in a tough situation. I appreciate your play on the field. But your antics off the field are defiling (defiling means bad, Ben) the Steelers name.
Steelers football will move on without you if necessary.
I realize that you are from Ohio. Your nature insists on doing some very stupid things. You will make mistakes. That’s okay. I know you won’t be perfect, and I accept that. But keep your mistakes on the field, and in preseason.
The Steelers Nation will continue to stand for hark work, attitude, integrity, ethics, and old-fashioned sore-for-days football.
If we didn’t, hell…we’d be Baltimore fans. And who wants that?
To wrap things up (no pun intended), I hope this serves as a wake-up call. You’ve done a lot for the Steelers Ben. But, if the Rooney family lets you go, let me assure you that you’ll be missed for only a little while.
You fit the team, Ben. Now fit the brand.