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Steelers Mason Rudolph – “I Still Have An Opportunity To Be A Starter” Says He Has “Been Told That”

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Steelers Mason Rudolph – “I Still Have An Opportunity To Be A Starter” Says He Has “Been Told That”

The Pittsburgh Steelers and Mason Rudolph have been having an elephant in the room type of off-season. Rudolph has been sitting patiently for a chance to be the Steelers starter after they drafted him in the third round of the 2019 NFL Draft. But Ben Roethlisberger was in front of him, and for as long as Roethlisberger was in Pittsburgh there was never going to be a chance for Rudolph to be that guy. Now with Roethlisberger out of town Pittsburgh just keeps adding more players in front of Rudolph.

Steelers Mason Rudolph

Steelers’ QB Mason Rudolph makes a throw in OTA’s (Karl Roser/Pittsburgh Steelers)

“You knew there was a Hall-of-Fame quarterback in front of you and you were developing, getting better at your position, and doing everything you can to be ready in case your number was called,” Rudolph said, via the team’s website. “Obviously, it’s a bit more realistic this year that it will be called.”

Even when Roethlisberger went down injured in 2019 and was lost for the season Rudolph still knew that as soon as Roethlisberger returned he was the Steelers guy. And when the Steelers turned to Rudolph during that 2019 season the results were a mixed bag. When it seemed like Rudolph was finally starting to have everything click Ravens’ Earl Thomas knocked Rudolph out and the legend of Duck Hodges was born.

Rudolph would lead Pittsburgh to a 5-3 record during the games he’d start in 2019, but it was an uneven experience to say the least for SteelerNation. Rudolph was ineffective more often than not, and would only throw for over 250 yards one time. In a 21-7 loss to Cleveland that featured Myles Garrett hitting Rudolph with his own helmet, Rudolph would attempt 44 passes and only complete 22 of them for 221 yards. And 4 interceptions. He would get benched the next week in Cincinnati as Hodges would lead Pittsburgh back to a win against the Bengals.

Earlier in the off-season the Steelers front office deemed Rudolph as the teams started by default. But then they signed Mitchell Trubisky, and drafted Kenny Pickett. Everyone has written Rudolph off except himself.

“Everything I want is still in front of me. I still have an opportunity to be a starter,” Rudolph said. “I can’t control what goes on on the second floor, but I’ve been told that and I’m excited to do my best to compete to be the guy. Everyone gets motivation from different places. I’d be lying if I said it didn’t motivate. That’s going to motivate any competitor.”

While everyone continues to say its a three quarterback race to be the starter it seems that the odds are highly stacked against Rudolph. Give him credit, though, as he continues to say all of the right things when he’s asked. But without an epic collapse from Trubisky there doesn’t seem to be room on the roster for Rudolph. And giving him reps instead of Pickett doesn’t make sense for the Steelers future.

For now all the quarterbacks are taking an even amount of reps, but when training camp rolls around that could be an entirely different situation. If Pickett understands the entire playbook by the time July and August rolls around it could be time for Rudolph to move onto another team.

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The Steelers have always been a central part of my life. I grew up listening to WDVE tapes recorded off of the radio of Steelers fight songs, and wearing Steelers jerseys as a fashion statement. I joined the SteelerNation.com message board when I was 12, and this site has been a big part of my life ever since. I’ve found life long friends and met some of the best people on earth through this site. In 2015, I was able to help revive the site and develop a news website and all of our social media platforms. I can’t wait to continue to grow with all of you. Go Steelers!

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  1. Pingback: The Mason Rudolph Experiment Has Failed: It's Time to Move On - SteelerNation.com

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