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Steelers’ Ben Roethlisberger: Crying doesn’t make you ‘less manly’

November 12, 2018

Ben Roethlisberger has a message for his NFL brethren and for males of all ages everywhere.

“Just because you cry,” the Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback said Wednesday morning, “doesn’t mean you’re any less manly.”

Roethlisberger was asked about the topic in the wake of Oakland quarterback Derek Carr being caught on camera appearing to shed tears at the end of another Raiders loss, one in which he suffered an arm injury.

Some reports have suggested that his relationship with teammates has “fractured” in part as a result of the tears.

Roethlisberger said he was not aware of the Carr situation, but he was willing to defend him.

“He might have been (physically) hurting, who knows?” Roethlisberger said. “I know I have cried in the locker room before from both joy and pain. You lose a football game, (you hurt).

“If you’re not showing emotion -- if he gets up from something like that (getting sacked and fumbling late in a blowout loss) and he’s laughing, then he’s going to get chastised for not showing enough emotion.

“I don’t know exactly the story (regarding Carr) ... but for me I don’t think it makes us any less of a man to show emotion.”

Roethlisberger, 36, is in his 15th NFL season. When the Steelers lost in the AFC championship game at the end of his 2004 rookie season, teammate Hines Ward broke down in tears the following day when discussing an emotional season-ending team meeting.

“Everybody was crying,” Ward told reporters at the time.

In particular, Ward was upset that beloved veteran teammate Jerome Bettis was perhaps heading into retirement without a Super Bowl ring. (Bettis, of course, did return for the 2005 season and the Steelers won the championship.)

“I think as men in general we all need to show emotion,” Roethlisberger said Wednesday. “I think there’s a misconception out there that as men we shouldn’t show emotion and I think that’s wrong. I think we need to show emotion whether it’s at a movie if you want to cry if it’s funny (or) if it’s sad (or) if you want to be around your wife or girlfriend.

“Just because you cry doesn’t mean you’re any less manly. I think that’s a false narrative.”

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