Big Ben visits Steelers office; Holmes here for workout
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The Steelers were expecting a visit from Santonio Holmes, their troubled No. 1 pick who showed up for a scheduled workout with his position coach just one day after he was arrested on charges of domestic violence in Columbus, Ohio.
But they were not expecting a visit from quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, who stopped by the team's office complex on the South Side yesterday for the first time since he was injured in a motorcycle accident June 12.
Mr. Roethlisberger was accompanied by a bodyguard and wore a green hood to cover his facial injuries. He did not take part in any type of physical workout, picked up some mail and other items, and left after 45 minutes. He did not speak to reporters.
Steelers coaches who saw Mr. Roethlisberger said they were surprised how good he looked and that the swelling and bruising that was readily apparent in his neck and facial area last week had greatly subsided.
Mr. Holmes, the 25th overall player selected in the draft, had been scheduled to work out with receivers coach Bruce Arians because he missed the team's voluntary workouts and coaching sessions last month. His appearance had nothing to do with his recent off-field behavior in which he has been arrested twice in the last 25 days.
Mr. Holmes was released from jail Monday afternoon after he was accused by the mother of his third child of trying to "cause or attempt to cause physical harm to a family or household member," according to a police affidavit. Mr. Holmes did not speak with reporters, but he issued a statement through the Steelers apologizing for his behavior.
"I understand that being a Pittsburgh Steeler carries along with it the demands for responsible behavior off the field," he said. "I want to apologize for the negative attention that my arrest on Monday has brought the Pittsburgh Steelers organization, especially in light of my previous arrest in May."
Mr. Holmes was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct in the South Beach section of Miami over Memorial Day weekend. He was released on a promissory note in which he agreed to appear for a later hearing.
Coach Bill Cowher is out of town on vacation, so he did not see Mr. Roethlisberger or meet with Mr. Holmes. He has told several people that he is "not real happy" with Mr. Holmes, a receiver from Ohio State who has not signed a contract yet.
The appearance of Mr. Roethlisberger was taken as a good sign of his recovery, because it came just eight days after he sustained numerous facial injuries and fractures when the motorcycle he was operating slammed into a car on Second Avenue at the 10th Street Bridge June 12. He was not wearing a helmet, for which he has been cited by police and ordered to pay a fine.
It is not known when Mr. Roethlisberger will be allowed to begin physical preparation for training camp, though doctors told him he would be ready to play in two months.
He is expected to be ready for the start of the season Sept. 7.
First Published June 21, 2006 12:00 am