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Mason Rudolph Replaces Injured Big Ben In Loss to Seattle Seahawks

Rudolph and Washington came up short as Pittsburgh fell to 0-2.

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[USATSI]

Mason Rudolph saw the field for the longest extended period of his NFL tenure on Sunday in a 28-26 loss to the Seattle Seahawks. Rudolph, in his second year as a bench-warmer for Big Ben, replaced the future Hall of Famer late in the first half after he sustained an elbow injury. Roethlisberger did not return to the game, forcing Rudolph into action where he played the entirety of the second half.

The results were about what you’d expect from a second-year quarterback short on NFL experience being thrust into battle unexpectedly. His first pass went right through the hands of Donte Moncrief, who looked as if he’d enjoyed a bucket of popcorn in the pre-game meal, and was intercepted.

From there he rebounded, though, tossing for two touchdowns in the second half. He finished 12-of-19 for 112 yards and a 92.5 QBR — well ahead of Big Ben’s 67.4 when healthy. While his first attempt was a pick, his first completion was a gem to JuJu Smith-Schuster.

Both of Rudolph’s touchdown passes went to tight end Vance McDonald and not James Washington, much to the chagrin of the OSU faithful. His first score was a sidearm sling in the red zone to cut the lead to one point.

His second to McDonald was an over-the-top pass in the red zone.

Roethlisberger’s status remains up in the air as of now and while he’s been dinged up off and on over the years, it’s possible that if he can’t get healthy that Rudolph could make his first NFL start next Sunday against the San Francisco 49ers.

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