Steelers fans rejoiced Monday when they saw Ben Roethlisberger get a fresh new cut, but not everyone was thrilled.
The Pittsburgh QB kept his word after promising eight months ago, fresh off elbow surgery, that he wouldn’t shave his beard or cut his hair until he was able to make NFL-caliber throws to his teammates. Following a workout session with teammates JuJu Smith-Schuster, James Conner and Ryan Switzer in which Roethlisberger made several impressive throws, Roethlisberger made a trip to Norman’s Cuttin’ Edge Barbershop in Sewickley, Pa., and got himself cleaned up. He posted clips of his promise, workout and haircut in a hype video on social media to announce his imminent return.
The development was welcomed by many in the Pittsburgh community, but not Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf, who criticized Roethlisberger’s actions Tuesday.
Many counties in the state, including Allegheny, which includes Pittsburgh, are in the “yellow” phase of reopening post-coronavirus lockdown. That means barbershops and hair salons aren’t supposed to be open to the public. Those establishments will be permitted to reopen once counties have moved to the “green” phase.
“My concern is just a general concern,” Wolf told reporters during his daily briefing (per ESPN). “Anybody who puts himself or herself into harm’s way is something that I think we have to try to avoid. 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 actually wreaking havoc on your life increases.
“I don’t personally think any Pennsylvanian ought to take that chance. I certainly don’t want to take that chance myself.”
The barbershop, through attorney Marc Kohnen, said in a statement that the shop has been closed since Wolf’s shutdown order. Kohnen added that shop owner Carlos Norman and Roethlisberger are friends, and that Norman did the haircut as a favor, free of charge.
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