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Mike Tomlin Announces Devlin Hodges as Starter vs. Cardinals

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“Duck” is getting another chance to hunt.

Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin announced on Tuesday that rookie quarterback Devlin Hodges will make his second consecutive start of the season when the Steelers visit the Arizona Cardinals this Sunday.

The news wasn’t a big surprise, as Hodges played well in his first start at Heinz Field on Sunday, throwing for a career-high 212 yards on 14 of 21 passing.

Hodges entered in relief of Mason Rudolph, leading the Steelers to a come-from-behind win against the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 12, and Tomlin said he’s continued to be impressed by the undrafted rookie out of Samford.

“Duck will be our quarterback again this week. He’s performed well in hostile environments, but he just doesn’t have a big sample size. I liked what I saw in L.A. I liked what I saw in the second half in Cincinnati. He’ll be moving now into his roughly seventh quarter of road work.”

Of course, that doesn’t mean he’s been perfect. Hodges threw an interception on a miscommunication with fellow rookie Diontae Johnson and also threw the ball away instead of taking a sack late in the game when the Steelers were trying to run the clock out.

“There’s so many things we have to work with Devlin on,” Tomlin said. “Specifically, those moments, certainly, because they’re weighted differently. They’re heavy. That’s when you’ve got to start taking calculated risks oftentimes in pursuit of victory. … It’s just things that he’s going to learn and we’re going to learn in terms of managing him along the way.”

Despite being on the road, Hodges and the Steelers should have a forgiving matchup on Sunday. The Arizona Cardinals are ranked last in the NFL, having allowed 307.5 yards per game.

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