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Terrible Towel Tales: Steelers finish below Browns for first time in 30 years

Steelers news and commentary December, December 29

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New York Jets v Cleveland Browns Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images

Welcome to the Terrible Towel Tales, where we’ll highlight some of the latest stories permeating Steelers media for your reading pleasure every Monday through Saturday. In today’s news…

For the first time in over 30 years, Browns better than the Steelers in a season | Jared Mueller, Dawgs By Nature

Historically, the Steelers are 81-63-1 against the Browns. Recently, there have been long stretches where Cleveland was lucky to win a game. From November 2003 to January 2012, Cleveland lost 16 of 17 matchups between the two.

Not only has Pittsburgh had the upper hand in head-to-head matchups but also in the standings. Until this year, the last time the Browns had a better record than the Steelers at the end of the year was in 1989:

How Steelers QB Mason Rudolph’s scout-team reps readied him for another chance | Mike DeFabo, The Athletic

Two plays into Mason Rudolph’s first NFL start in 769 days, the quarterback who spent the last two seasons at No. 3 on the depth chart hit George Pickens on a quick slant. Just like that, Pickens was off and running for a tone-setting 86-yard touchdown — and so too was the Steelers’ offense.

From the outside, Rudolph’s 290-yard, two-touchdown performance — and the 34-point outburst he ignited — might have come out of nowhere. But not if you ask the Steelers’ starting defense.

Steelers Great Hines Ward Out as XFL Coach | Stephen Thompson, All Steelers

Former Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Hines Ward will have to find a new team to work for if he wants to continue his coaching career in professional football.

In a surprising bit of news from the XFL, the former Steelers standout, who had been one of the seven new head coaches in the league last year, is out as the head coach of the San Antonio Brahmas and replaced by former Houston Roughnecks head coach, Wade Phillips, according to a report from James Larson of USFL Newsroom and Pro Football Network.