The Jacksonville Jaguars don’t just beat you. They leave you questioning your entire existence. They heap hot coals of shame upon your head. You will leave a defeat to the Jaguars humiliated and disoriented — lost as to how you got there and unable to remember any triumphs along the way.
Ben Roethlisberger had more than a bad day today. He had a career-worst five interceptions. Jalen Ramsey had one. Then Telvin Smith. Then Barry Church. Then Tashaun Gipson twice. Two of those were returned for touchdowns. Meanwhile the Steelers didn’t score a touchdown all day.
Shortly after the game, Roethlisberger was asked about the game by reporters. These are simple questions:
How do you feel?
What happened out there?
Can the team bounce back?
Roethlisberger, now an utter shell of himself and a shadow of what once was, could only find six depressing words:
“Maybe I don’t have it anymore.”
Ben Roethlisberger after #Jaguars loss: "Maybe I don’t have it anymore"— Andrew Gibson (@1010XLAG) October 8, 2017
Maybe. Big Ben is thirsty for answers, for resolution, for closure — but none find him in the Land Of Being Defeated By The Jaguars.
I. He has found the looking glass and it is an unkind reflection. He wishes the mirror would break, that something would distort the vision but is crystal clear — and it is a haunting visage.
Don’t. Thou art weighed in the balances and found wanting.
Have. He is empty-handed and laid bare before the altar of Jacksonville.
It. Whatever it is, it matters not — for it is so distant from him it borders on myth.
Anymore. This is his last gasp before sinking into the void. His swan song. Our former hero remembers, albeit faintly, that it was once his. He was a champion once.
And then it all fades to black in the recesses of his mind. Because Jaguars.