Rudolph and the Steelers have agreed to terms on a one-year contract extension, Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports. The agreement, which Rudolph and the Steelers agreed upon on the eve of the 2021 NFL Draft, keeps the 2018 third-round pick under contract through 2022. Rudolph is currently slated to serve as the top backup to Ben Roethlisberger during the 2021 season, and he could be in the mix as the team considers its plans at quarterback long-term.
Rudolph is expected to serve as the Steelers' backup quarterback in 2021 following news that Ben Roethlisberger is expected to return, Aditi Kinkhabwala of NFL Network reports. Roethlisberger's 2020 season was underwhelming by most metrics, but the Steelers nevertheless want their franchise quarterback for another season. In turn, Rudolph will spend the final year of his rookie contract as the backup to Roethlisberger. The 2018 third-round pick started in Week 17 against the Browns and completed 56 percent of his passes for 315 yards (8.1 YPA), two touchdowns and an interception.
Rudolph completed 22 of 39 passes for 315 yards, two touchdowns and one interception while also rushing once for one yard in Sunday's 24-22 loss to the Browns. Rudolph received a spot start in Sunday's regular-season finale while Ben Roethlisberger rested ahead of the team's playoff run, completing 56.4 percent of his passes and averaging 8.1 yards per attempt. He was replaced by Joshua Dobbs late in the game but still topped 300 yards for the first time in his career. Rudolph will revert to a backup role during the playoffs and should do the same in 2021 if Roethlisberger continues playing next season.
Rudolph will receive a spot start Sunday in Cleveland, Missi Matthews of the Steelers' official site reports. Coach Mike Tomlin announced Tuesday that Ben Roethlisberger and other veterans to be determined won't suit up in the regular-season finale to fit in some rest before the playoffs. Rudolph has only played 21 snaps on offense this year, but in 10 appearances in 2019 he completed 62 percent of his passes for 1,765 yards, 13 touchdowns and nine interceptions.
Head coach Mike Tomlin said Tuesday that Rudolph will receive the bulk of the reps at quarterback in practice this week with starter Ben Roethlisberger (knees) uncertain to be activated from the reserve/COVID-19 list prior to this weekend's game against the Bengals, Missi Matthews of the Steelers' official site reports. Roethlisberger was one of four Steelers placed on the list Tuesday after those players were identified to have been high-risk close contacts of tight end Vance McDonald, who tested positive for COVID-19 following Sunday's 24-19 win over the Cowboys. Even though Roethlisberger has tested negative for the coronavirus, he'll still be forced to self-isolate for five days in accordance with NFL protocols, meaning he won't be able to practice Wednesday through Friday. Roethlisberger will continue to take part in virtual meetings with the Steelers and will remain prepared to start Week 10 if he's activated from the list when eligible Saturday, but Rudolph waits in the wings in case the veteran can't go. Rudolph's last NFL start came against this same Bengals team back on Nov. 24, 2019, when he struggled through two quarters before being pulled in favor of Devlin Hodges.
|* indicates player did not play that week|
|WK||DATE||OPP||OPP RANK||OPP FPTS|
|2||09/19||Las Vegas Raiders||24||22.38|
|4||10/03||@Green Bay Packers||7||18.00|
|11||11/21||@Los Angeles Chargers||25||22.63|
|16||12/26||@Kansas City Chiefs||18||21.26|
Red Zone Trends
|3 Year Avg||61.5||696||5||3||12||0||52|