Pittsburgh Steelers: Jones, Dobbs and Rudolph are taking advantage of a missing Ben

PITTSBURGH, PA - AUGUST 20: Joshua Dobbs
PITTSBURGH, PA - AUGUST 20: Joshua Dobbs /

Ben Roethlisberger isn’t attending the first week of Pittsburgh Steelers OTAs, after participating in Day 1. But the headline isn’t the concern of his absence, it’s the competition between the remaining three quarterbacks.

With Ben gone, Landry Jones, Josh Dobbs and Mason Rudolph are front and center, looking to earn their place on the final 53-man roster. Although the team would like to see Roethlisberger at practice, it’s not a problem for him to miss. Maurkice Pouncey even said he believes Ben had a family vacation planned.

What’s an even bigger story is the three QBs fighting for two roster spots. For the first, and probably last, time Dobbs, Jones and Rudolph will be the only quarterbacks getting reps. This gives all three their best chance at showing their worth for this season and the future.

Rudolph may already be a lock for one of the three depth chart spots. The third-round pick is looking like the next franchise quarterback in Pittsburgh. A strong arm, chemistry with the team’s second-round pick and a few years behind Roethlisberger is the combination the Steelers are hoping to turn into a long and successful career.

Outside of the rook, though, nothing is guaranteed. Jones knows the offense better. Dobbs has a bigger upside. Both are a work in progress, who are likely turning into nothing more than a career backup. But with both careers on the line, they’re looking to prove everything with each snap.

Kind of. Jones could probably find another job. He’s established as a promising backup who can lead a team when called upon. He won’t be looking at anything promising, but he should end up somewhere if he’s cut.

Dobbs is a question. He has upside, but a lot to work on. For right now, he’d probably get nothing more than a job fighting for a roster spot on a different team. Until he corrects his accuracy issues, and develops a stronger sense on decision making, his future in the NFL is shaky.

In Pittsburgh, though, it’s anyone’s game. Jones appears to be the early favorite, but Dobbs has promise. The Steelers don’t need him to be anything more than a third-string QB, right now. Meaning if they see something they’ll keep him around.

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It’s only June, though. OTAs are a week in and this competition is wide open. But for these three quarterbacks, they’re using every second of a missing Ben to prove they’re worth keeping.