There are hints that this could be the case for Ben Roethlisberger.
According to ESPN, the Steelers defender is expected to end his time with franchising after this season, and he even told his teammates and members of the organization that it was his plan.
The future Hall of Fame did not speak openly about it as the 5-5-1 Steelers are fighting for the playoffs. But according to ESPN, Roethlisberger has dropped out of his last five regular games with the Steelers.
On Sunday, Pittsburgh will host Baltimore at home, beating Northern AFC 8-3. A source told ESPN that Roethlisberger had told him he did not want to play in a franchise other than Pittsburgh and called it “unlikely” that the QB would serve elsewhere without completely denying it.
Former Steelers stars Rocky Blair and Ryan Clark openly criticized both the team’s current state and Rothlisberger, claiming it was time for Big Ben to hang up the valves.
The 39-year-old midfielder is in his 18th season in the league and will turn 40 next March. His 410 shots in his career are the most in Steelers history and the eighth in NFL history. His 62,870 passing yards are sixth and his 161 career wins are fifth. He was a two-time Super Bowl winner, selected for six Pro Bowls, and was named the best attacking rookie of the year in 2004.