While on my to eat some lunch during my time working at CenturyLink Field today, I noticed two gentlemen tossing around a football after I exited one of the freight elevators. I gawked briefly, but kept kept walking as I did. Sure enough, it was Big Ben — Ben Roethlisberger.
I was surprised that there was no one between me and him. No security. No coach. No one. I like to think of him as a villain, with good reasons and bad.
Of course, what am I gonna do? I don’t want his autograph. I don’t like him, what I know of him from the media et al. But the sports star celebrity power is remarkably intoxicating. Of course, I don’t want to hurt him. I couldn’t even if I wanted. He’s a big fella, huge actually.
His size, his enormity, was quite a topic of conversation amongst some of the workers. How big Big Ben is. Television really doesn’t convey it. He is tall and thick, almost chunky. It’s hard to miss him, even in a crowd I’m sure.
It was odd to see so many Steelers fans in the house. They travel well. I glimpsed a few scenes. As players exited the visitor locker room, the Steeler faithful cheered loudly, some of whom had nabbed tickets near the entrance to the playing field. Again, I was surprised how close I was to the action. The players were mere feet away from me and the fans above. I felt like I was part of history, and to an extent I was.
Ever since Super Bowl 40, or XL, I’ve had a bad opinion of the Steelers, the refs and the NFL bigwigs. This time around, they lost, thankfully.
The Seahawks offense played a terrific game. It was a performance I’d been anxiously and impatiently awaiting since September. Just when would all of this on-field talent explode in a fury of yards and points? Well, it finally happened on Sunday afternoon.
Managing one of the concessions, it was difficult to watch much of the game, so I’ve been sitting in one of the employee locker rooms catching up on the Seahawks-Steelers matchup and Sunday Night Football, where the Broncos defeated the New England Patriots in overtime. Since I work most gamedays, I can’t watch many games on TV, so I mostly watch highlights via NFL.com.
It’s been a great day. Russell Wilson should play with a stomach bug every week. The Broncos, even without Peyton Manning, proved to be up to the challenge of Tom Brady and the Patriots. The 49ers kept pace with the Cardinals, but couldn’t pull off the win, unfortunately. That would have been a great help to the Seahawks. That would have been quite the trifecta. But two outta three ain’t bad.