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Roethlisberger tells of first meeting with OC Haley

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  • By Marc Sessler NFL.com
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The ice is thawing between Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and his new offensive coordinator Todd Haley.

The two finally spoke for the first time a few weeks ago after the former Chiefs coach was hired Feb. 6.

A decidedly cranky Big Ben waited for Haley to make the first move in the relationship, but when the coach finally picked up the phone, the quarterback let it roll to voicemail.

"I didn't recognize the number," Roethlisberger told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette this week, telling the newspaper he called Haley back after listening to the message.

When the star-crossed duo spoke, Big Ben described the 10- to 15-minute chat as productive, a relief for Steelers fans amid reports that president Art Rooney II pushed former OC Bruce Arians out the door and called for Haley to replace him, irritating his star quarterback in the process (a report Rooney later denied).

"It was a really good talk," Roethlisberger said. "Unfortunately, we can't talk football right now (due to CBA rules) and that's one of the big things I wanted to talk about.

"So it was just me talking to him, about golf, his family, my family, him having been a ballboy here, just things like that. It was a good start and I felt it was a good step in the right direction."

The Steelers face a string of big decisions this offseason, but with (a happy) Roethlisberger at quarterback, this is a team that's shown ability to fight through winds of change. No doubt that talks of golf and loved ones will turn into whispers of dropping 35 points on the Bengals soon enough.

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