With the AFC North division secured, the Steelers plan on resting their most important player.
Head coach Mike Tomlin announced at his weekly press conference on Tuesday that he plans on resting Ben Roethlisberger and will start Mason Rudolph this Sunday in the season finale against the Cleveland Browns.
While this isn’t a surprising decision, it’s one that could have an impact on the AFC playoff situation because Cleveland still hasn’t secured a spot and a win would clinch them a spot. The Steelers are locked into either the No. 2 or the No. 3 seed
This will be Rudolph’s first start since November 24, 2019 against the Cincinnati Bengals, a game in which he was benched in favor of Devlin Hodges. Rudolph was the last Steelers quarterback to start in Cleveland, when he was notoriously assaulted by Browns defensive end Myles Garrett with his own helmet.
Roethlisberger is coming off a great second half performance against the Indianapolis Colts in which he led the Steelers to a 28-24 comeback win which clinched the AFC North. For the game, Roethlisberger completed 34 of 49 passes for 342 yards and three touchdown passes.