The Steelers have officially moved Mason Rudolph over Mitch Trubisky on their official team depth chart. Pittsburgh revealed the depth chart earlier this week, and while most changes take a few weeks to be implemented before becoming permanent, this one is different. Rudolph, no matter what, will be the backup with Trubisky acting as the third quarterback, which seemingly all but ends Trubisky’s time in Pittsburgh.
Mike Tomlin announced that Rudolph would start this week if Kenny Pickett could not play. Pickett performed individual drills second in the pecking order behind Rudolph, but ahead of Trubisky, during the early portion of practice on Wednesday. He appeared to be moving in a much more limited fashion than the other two, fully healthy quarterbacks.
Pickett is attempting to return just two weeks after having surgery to repair a right high ankle sprain that the suffered against the Arizona Cardinals on Dec. 2. He practiced for the first time since the injury on Tuesday and was characterized as limited. Tomlin said that the big day for Pickett will be Thursday.
Regardless, even if he does play, it appears he has a new backup for good. The Steelers do not make those changes to the depth chart without it being etched into stone. It even took Broderick Jones a few weeks to get the official starter tag at right tackle. But now that it is official, Rudolph has taken over that spot Trubisky and if Pickett can not play or would get injured again, would play.
Trubisky was benched after throwing three interceptions and losing a fumble in two and a half games of relief. The Steelers went 0-3 in those three games. The team is now facing a near must-win game against the Cincinnati Bengals this Saturday, and will do so likely uncertain as to who the quarterback will be until the very end of the practice week.