Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Garrett spoke publicly on Wednesday about the infamous brawl that resulted in Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett swinging at Rudolph’s head with his helmet.
“With how I played, I did not do a good enough job to help our team win the game,” he said. “On the second-to-last play of the game, I fell short of the mark. I should have done a better job at keeping my cool in that situation,” the former Oklahoma State Sooner said in a prepared statement to reporters.
Rudolph continued: “As for my involvement last week, there’s no acceptable excuse. The bottom line is I should’ve done a better job keeping my composure in that situation. (I fell) short of what I believe it means to be a Pittsburgh Steeler and a member of the NFL.”
The melee occurred on Thursday night with eight seconds left to play and the Browns were leading 21-7 when Rudolph took a hit from Myles Garrett.
Browns defensive tackle Larry Ogunjobi and Steelers center Maurkice Pouncey were also ejected as a result. Ogunjobi was suspended for one game and fined an additional, undisclosed number for unnecessary roughness. Pouncey was suspended for three games and was fined an undisclosed fee for fighting. Garrett was handed down an indefinite suspension from the league, which he is appealing.
Rudolph’s Change of Heart From His Original Comments
Immediately following the incident, Rudolph did not hold back when asked his thoughts on Garrett, calling his opponent “cowardly.”
“I thought it was pretty cowardly and bush league,” Rudolph said late Thursday night. “I’m not going to back down from any bully. I felt like I had a bone to pick with him. I appreciate the line always having my back, but I was angry.”
Six days later, it appears Rudolph has a change of heart and no longer harbors any hostile feelings toward him.
“I have no ill will toward Myles Garrett,” the 24-year-old insisted. “Great respect for his ability as a player. And I know that if Myles could go back, he would handle the situation differently.”
Garrett issued a statement of his own, apologizing to all parties involved as he addressed his role in the fight.
“Last night, I made a terrible mistake,” the former number one overall pick said. “I lost my cool and what I did as selfish and unacceptable. I know that we are all responsible for our actions and I can only prove my true character through my actions moving forward. I want to apologize to Mason Rudolph, my teammates, our entire organization, our fans, and to the NFL. I know I have to be accountable for what happened, learn from my mistake and I fully intend to do so.”
Details About Garrett’s Appeal
On Wednesday, Garrett met with league officials regarding his indefinite suspension. Per ESPN’s Dianna Russini, the 23-year-old’s hearing lasted a little over two hours. Browns head coach Freddie Kitchens revealed that Garrett represented himself.
“Myles has great representation,” Kitchens said Wednesday morning. “More importantly, Myles will represent himself well. We’re going to continue to support him and Larry and we will not waver with that support.”
Garrett may not be waiting long to know his fate, either. A decision is expected to be made before the weekend.