Steelers’ Mike Tomlin speaks out on benching Mason Rudolph for Devlin Hodges
The Pittsburgh Steelers defeated the division-rival Cincinnati Bengals, 16-10, on Sunday to keep their playoff hopes in the AFC alive. Despite the victory, how the team got there was a bit unconventional following the benching of starting quarterback Mason Rudolph. Following the game, head coach Mike Tomlin expanded upon his reasoning for inserting another rookie, Devlin Hodges, into the quarterback role.
“Just felt like our offense need a spark,” Tomlin said. “Mason wasn’t doing enough.”
Rudolph has been in the news over the past week primarily due to his role in the brawl last week between Pittsburgh and the Cleveland Browns which saw him drilled over the head with his own helmet by Browns defensive end Myles Garrett.
Prior to his benching against Cincinnati, Rudolph went 8-for-16 through the air for 85 passing yards, while also throwing an interception in the red zone.
Hodges, who won his first career start earlier this season when Rudolph was unable to suit up, stepped in and finished 5-for-11 for 118 passing yards, tossing a touchdown to James Washington that put the team ahead in the third quarter.
Despite having opened the season 0-3, Pittsburgh now sits at 6-5, having gone 5-3 when Rudolph has been the team’s starter under center. With Ben Roethlisberger out for the season due to an elbow ailment, it will be Rudolph and Hodges’ team for the remainder of the season, although who will get the start next Sunday in Pittsburgh versus Cleveland remains up in the air.
Rudolph tossed four interceptions against the Browns last Thursday.