After just 5 weeks of the regular season, the Steelers are now forced to watch a third string quarterback at the helm as the team prepares for the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 6, before their Week 7 bye week.
The player who delivered the hit on Rudolph was safety Earl Thomas, and although he was flagged 15 yards for a roughing the passer call, after the game he said he didn’t go high, or intentionally tried to hurt the second year quarterback.
The full quote below:
Thomas on Rudolph hit: "I didn’t go high. I didn’t intentionally try to hurt him. I’m worried about him. I heard he’s at the hospital. My prayers go out to him and his family. I’ve never tried to hurt anybody. At the end of the day, guys have families."— Jeff Zrebiec (@jeffzrebiec) October 6, 2019
The remorse and thoughts about Rudolph’s health are warranted, but the fact Thomas suggests he didn’t go high is almost laughable. It is clear Thomas’ helmet was driven into the jaw of Rudolph rendering him motionless on the Heinz Field turf.
It didn’t help Rudolph was being hit from behind at the same time, but watch the play below and you be the judge:
Thomas’ comments will do very little to help the 1-4 Steelers find a way to win a game. While Devlin Hodges played well in his time under center, there is no guarantee the team will be able to rebound and have any success with a third string undrafted rookie quarterback.
To add insult to injury during the game, when the Heinz Field cart was brought out to take Rudolph off the field, it looked as if the cart had stalled, or failed to work, as it was pushed off the field. Some thought this was the reason why Rudolph walked off the field, but according to Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the reason the cart didn’t work was user error. He also adds Rudolph wanted to walk off the field, not be carted off.
Stadium source: The medical cart that would have transported Mason Rudolph from the field failed because of operator error, not because it broke down. The NFL has already called to investigate. Plus, according to source, Rudolph wanted to walk off the field, not be carted.— Gerry Dulac (@gerrydulac) October 6, 2019
The Steelers now will try to put together a lineup they feel is capable of beating a very good Chargers team on the road. The team will play the Chargers on Sunday Night Football on the west coast before their Week 7 bye week. Be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the black-and-gold leading up to the game.