Week 3 against the San Francisco 49ers quarterback Mason Rudolph took the field in his first NFL start. The former Oklahoma State Cowboy quarterback took his lumps in a 24-20 loss on the road. The film study I did on him was critical of his performance. Lack of progression, not waiting for plays to develop and his pocket presence were the main targets of my ire.
But that was last week. The Pittsburgh Steelers played the now 0-4 Cincinnati Bengals on Monday night at Heinz Field. Rudolph was a stellar 24-28 for 229 yards and two touchdowns. There were several factors that were different but what I saw was a vastly different Rudolph. Progressions were made, plays could develop, the pressure was felt but no high level of panic ensued. I will not say he was not without his faults but the number of good things vastly outweighs the negatives.
Rudolph will face the Baltimore Ravens who have been susceptible through the air. Through four games in 2019, the Ravens have given up over 300 yards three times, the only team that did not break that mark was the inept Miami Dolphins. On paper, this appears to be another game in which Rudolph should shine but we all know games in the NFL are not played on paper. Playing on the road against a division rival is never a gimme in the NFL.
Check out the film study in the player above, and be sure to let me know your thoughts in the comments below!