Steelers’ Mason Rudolph talks about improving his deep ball, teammates’ growth
As Pittsburgh Steelers training camp continues, Wednesday’s guest in our “Letters from Camp” podcast at “Breakfast With Benz” is Mason Rudolph.
Perhaps no Steeler will be as scrutinized by the fans during Friday night’s preseason opener as he will be.
Essentially, Rudolph was a redshirt during his rookie season. But after being drafted in the third round out of Oklahoma State, it’s time to see if he can at least grab the backup quarterback job from Josh Dobbs.
Neither Rudolph nor Dobbs have lit up the practice field at Saint Vincent College. But as Rudolph explains, that’s not from a lack of mental growth in the pocket. He says the secondary has had a noticeable jump in competitiveness this year.
One area where Rudolph has focused is refining his footwork — that has been evident this summer.
He also talks about his approach to throwing the deep ball. Rudolph appears to have more zip on deep passes, throwing more on a line, and relying less on that accurate deep ball arc he came to master at Oklahoma State.
The former Big 12 standout won’t dismiss that assessment. But he says he’d still like the completion percentage to jump on throws down the field.
While Rudolph is looking to make a big leap from Year 1 to Year 2, so is his favorite college target and current teammate in Pittsburgh — James Washington. Rudolph has some encouraging observations there.
He and Dobbs will both see a ton of playing time at Heinz Field against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, as Ben Roethlisberger is expected to see minimal action (if any). So, Friday will be as good of a chance as any for Rudolph to show he is ready to be the next man up at quarterback.
This year, I mean. Not to take over for Roethlisberger long term.
At least not yet anyway. The guy to do that may only be a freshman in college.