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Steelers Daily News & Links: Mason Rudolph Inspires, Pep Rally Planned



Steelers QB Mason Rudolph
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph runs off the field against the Baltimore Ravens on Jan. 6, 2024. -- Ed Thompson / Steelers Now

Steelers Daily News & Links: Your daily stop for all of the news and links from the Pittsburgh Steelers, NFL and around the Sports Now Group.

🏈 Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph sent a video of encouragement to a patient at UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh. Last week at this time, Isaac wasn’t able to walk. Today, inspired by the Steelers and their playoff run he decided to give walking a try.

🏈 In support of the Steelers playoff game on Sunday against the Buffalo Bills, the city of Pittsburgh will be holding a pep rally at the City-County Building on Friday from 12 – 1 p.m.

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🏈 On this day in 1975, the Steelers won their first Super Bowl title with a 16-6 victory over the Minnesota Vikings at Tulane Stadium in New Orleans.

🏈 The Steelers official account on X posted a throwback video of when Le’Veon Bell rushed for a franchise recored 236 yards against the Bills in the snow in 2016. The Steelers will need a similar performance from Najee Harris on Sunday in Orchard Park. The current weather forecast calls for a temperature of 26 degrees at kickoff with possible snow showers. There is also the anticipation of 25-mph wind and gusts that could reach up to 50 mph.

🏈 Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: The Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court ruled that a fee imposed by the city of Pittsburgh on professional athletes and artists performing at publicly funded venues is unconstitutional, a significant win for prominent entertainers who have fought city officials for nearly five years.

Sometimes referred to as a “jock tax,” the fee absorbs 3% of income earned in Pittsburgh’s professional sports facilities, including PPG Paints Arena, PNC Park and Acrisure Stadium.

The appellate court’s 15-page opinion on Wednesday upheld a decision by Common Pleas Judge Christine Ward two years ago — she instituted an injunction preventing the city from collecting the 3% tax from athletes and entertainers who perform at those facilities. Wednesday’s decision keeps the injunction in place.

🏈 Per Jason Mackey of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, former Steelers offensive tackle Alejandro Villanueva is now a farmer in Homestead, Fla. The picture of Rudolph in overalls that’s made the rounds on social media was at Villanueva’s fruit and vegetable farm. Villaneuva and Mason Rudolph are close friends.

“I would always tell Mason that I knew the moment was gonna come,” Villanueva told Mackey. “The man has been waiting for this for years. I’m super happy for Mason and how everything has transpired.”

🎂 Happy Birthday to former Steelers wide receiver Calvin Sweeney, born on January 12, 1955 in Riverside, California. Sweeney was selected by the Steelers in the fourth round out of USC in the 1979 NFL Draft. Sweeney, who won a Super Bowl in his rookie year, played nine seasons in Pittsburgh, recording 113 receptions for 1,775 yards (15.7 average) and seven touchdowns. Sweeney caught Terry Bradshaw’s last touchdown pass of his career against the New York Jets in 1983.  It was also the last throw of Bradshaw’s Hall of Fame career, as he blew out his elbow on the pass.

🎥 Thursday marked the 21st anniversary of the Steelers’ 34-31 overtime loss to the Tennessee Titans in the Divisional Round Game. A 15-year old Pat McAfee was also booed when he was awarded as a Punt, Pass and Kick winner. Titans fans took a dislike to him since he was from Pittsburgh.



Pittsburgh Hockey Now: The Penguins came back from a 3-1 deficit, but lost in overtime to the Canucks.

Pittsburgh Baseball Now: The Pirates avoided arbitration with Mitch Keller, David Bednar and five others.

Pittsburgh Sports Now: Pitt finished in the Top 25 of the Learfield Cup standings for the fall.

West Virginia Sports Now: Quarterback Nicco Marchiol announced he’s returning to West Virginia.

Nittany Sports Now: Former Penn State head coach Bill O’Brien is among the favorites to replace Bill Belichick at New England.

Pittsburgh Soccer Now: Pittsburgh Riverhounds goalkeeper Jahmali Waite is the latest to move on.