Impending Steelers camp battle: Mason Rudolph vs. Dwayne Haskins

Former Washington Football Team quarterback Dwayne Haskins (7) Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
Former Washington Football Team quarterback Dwayne Haskins (7) Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports /
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Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph (2). Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports /

Dwayne Haskins still has more tools available yet Mason Rudolph is probably a better fit right now.

I have been giving a lot of credit to Haskins, and I have to be honest. I don’t know if he can beat out Rudolph for his job. Haskins certainly offers improvements in a lot of areas over Rudolph. Yet, Rudolph seems like the better fit culturally in this organization. I was very hard on how Rivera ended Haskins’ time in Washington, along with a messy season that saw Haskins go from starter, to inactive, to backup, to start, then back to inactive before his release. I understand Haskins’ frustrations in that situation and it would certainly be hard to maintain the professionalism and maturity expected from a star quarterback.

However, Rudolph went through something similar in the Steelers 2019. Ben went down with an injury and he was the starter. He then got hurt, came back from injury, was benched shortly after, and wouldn’t get another shot until the last game of the season. The difference between the two was how Rudolph maintained a proper image and attitude by taking it as a learning experience while working to prove he deserved another shot. The situation was still a little different, but Rudolph seems to be able to handle things off the field better than Haskins could. We saw an all-pro running back and wide receiver ousted from the Steelers because they were unable to handle the way we handle things off the field.

Haskins changed his jersey number while quoting the significance to the number 3 in the bible. However, time will tell how much he has truly matured. Rudolph has done enough to not detriment his team off the field, but he hasn’t shown a ton from a leadership standpoint. It is hard to do that as a backup, but the biggest thing these two quarterbacks will have to worry about is whether they can come in and lead the team.

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Both Dwayne Haskins and Mason Rudolph are going to have to show they have what it takes not only to play well but truly lead the team on and off the field. Whichever one of the two that does that will have a realistic shot at taking the reigns when Ben is out of the picture. I truly think that Haskins, as he has already won over one roster and been voted a captain, has the better shot at doing so in Pittsburgh. Yet, only time will tell.