Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger underwent season-ending elbow surgery in September, just two weeks into the 2019 season. At the time, the veteran quarterback said he wouldn’t cut his hair or trim his beard again until he could throw “a legit NFL pass.”
This week, much to the delight of Steeler Nation, the team released a video of Big Ben completing passes during a workout with teammates.
But at least one well-known Pennsylvania resident was not happy about it: Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf.
Why was the governor bent out of shape?
After the Steelers’ video showed footage of Roethlisberger throwing to running back James Conner and wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster, the post cut to the all-star passer sitting in a barber chair with his hair cut and beard trimmed.
Image source: Twitter screenshot
That was a big problem for Wolf.
Reacting to the Roethlisberger video, the governor made it clear at a news conference Tuesday that he disapproved of anyone who would put themselves and others “in harm’s way” by patronizing businesses that should not be open yet as dictated by the state’s reopening plan, the Washington Post said.
“Anybody who puts himself or herself into harm’s way is something that I think we have to try to avoid,” he said.
Norman’s Cuttin’ Edge Barbershop where Roethlisberger got his trim is in a Pittsburgh suburb in Allegheny County, which, according to ESPN, has not moved past the governor’s “yellow phase” designation that requires the continued closure of all hair salons and barbershops. Those businesses can open once the county they are in has moved to the “green phase.”
“When you go to something like a barbershop and you’re not protected, I don’t care who you are, the chances of that virus wreaking havoc on your life increases,” Wolf stated. “I don’t think any Pennsylvanian ought to take that chance. I certainly don’t want to take that chance myself.”
ESPN reported that the shop’s owner, Carlos Norman, is friends with Roethlisberger. According to Norman’s lawyer, the shop has been closed since the governor’s initial shutdown order, though he did cut the quarterback’s hair as a favor and for free.