With Kenny Pickett in concussion protocol, one Steelers insider believes that veteran Mason Rudolph has the edge to start over Mitchell Trubisky.
The only thing we know with any kind of certainty about the Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback situation entering the team’s Week 15 matchup is that it will almost surely not be rookie Kenny Pickett. After entering concussion protocol during Sunday’s loss to the Ravens, the young signal-caller’s status remains up in the air but indications seem to be that he’ll miss the matchup against the Panthers.
In the Baltimore loss, it was the Week 1 starter, Mitch Trubisky, who got the nod and the results were horrendous. Trubisky threw three picks in relief of the concussed Pickett and that was a major factor in the Steelers taking the loss. Now at least one team insider believes that has opened the door for Mason Rudolph.
According to Mark Kaboly of The Athletic on Twitter, Rudolph was largely mum on specifics about the ongoing quarterback battle in practice but said that the two split reps. Kaboly, however, went as far as to say that what he’s seen and knows has Rudolph with the edge over Trubisky to start if Pickett is indeed ruled out.
Steelers: Mason Rudolph may have edge to start over Mitchell Trubisky
Look, we know what Mason Rudolph is as a quarterback and it’s not just the recipient of a helmet-swing from Myles Garrett. He’s made 10 career starts for Pittsburgh and has a 5-4-1 record. In 17 total career appearances, he’s completed 61.5% of his throws for 16 touchdowns with 11 interceptions.
None of that is going to turn heads or make the Steelers an entirely new offense. However, he has proven to be safer with the football than Trubisky while also moving the ball enough to produce a better-than-.500 record.
For this current iteration of Mike Tomlin’s team, that might be the best option. One of the reasons Pickett has made the team more competitive is because he’s started playing smarter and developing, thus allowing the team’s biggest strength, its defense, to put it in position to win games.
Trubisky failed at doing that in relief in Week 14. So now it’s looking like Week 15 will be Rudolph’s chance to prove he can accomplish the task at hand more adequately. And it appears we’ll know more clearly on that come Thursday.