Mason Rudolph Signed With Titans Without an Offer From Steelers: Report

The Steelers expressed interest in resigning Rudolph before the QB walked in free agency.

Getty The Steelers expressed interest in resigning Rudolph before the QB walked in free agency.

The Pittsburgh Steelers never made an offer to free agent quarterback Mason Rudolph in the 2024 offseason, according to The Athletic’s Mark Kaboly.

Per a tweet from producer Austin Bechtold, Kaboly told the Joe Starkey Show on 93.7 The Fan the Steelers and Rudolph’s representation were scheduled to meet, but Rudolph changed direction when reports emerged on March 10 that the team signed quarterback Russell Wilson.

“Rudolph’s representatives and Omar (Khan) were gonna meet on Sunday to figure out where they were gonna go with this all, and there wasn’t a sense of urgency on the Steelers part at that point,” Kaboly said on April 10. “They basically told him to hold your cards a little bit here. Later Sunday night, when did (the Russell Wilson news) come out, 11:30? Within 3 minutes after that, Mason Rudolph says ‘I am not going back to the Steelers.’ So, there was no official offer on the table. They just told him to sit still.”

Rudolph officially signed with the Tennessee Titans on March 15.

Steelers Expressed Interest in Resigning Rudolph

The Steelers began the 2024 offseason motivated to keep Rudolph in Pittsburgh.

In relief of an injured Kenny Pickett and after the team benched backup Mitch Trubisky, Rudolph went 3-0 as the starter in the final 3 games of the regular season and led the team to a playoff berth.

Though Pickett was healthy enough to return, head coach Mike Tomlin gave Rudolph the start in the team’s playoff loss to the Buffalo Bills on January 15.

According to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Steelers general manager Omar Khan told reporters on February 29 the team would try to negotiate Rudolph’s return.

“We would like to have him back, and I believe he wants to come back and compete. He likes it here, and we’ve had a good experience with Mason,” Khan said at the time.

Instead, the team’s decision to sign Wilson caused a domino effect that led to a completely revamped Steelers quarterback room.

Kaboly reports that the Wilson signing solidified Rudolph’s decision to leave Pittsburgh. Shortly after the trade, Kenny Pickett asked for a fresh start and was traded to the Philadelphia Eagles. That opened the door for the Steelers to trade for Justin Fields trade on March 16.

Steelers Will Debut a Brand New Look on Offense

The quarterback room is far from the only major change the Steelers have made on offense this offseason.

The Steelers hired former Atlanta Falcons head coach Arthur Smith as its new offensive coordinator on January 30. Smith will be tasked with revamping a Steelers offense that struggled to produce consistently under former offensive coordinator Matt Canada.

Smith will work alongside a changing receivers group.

The Steelers traded their former top receiver in Diontae Johnson to the Carolina Panthers on March 13.

Third-year receiver George Pickens is set to assume the role as the team’s top target, but there is still not a clear number 2 behind him. Pickens and Calvin Austin III are the only receivers from last year’s team who remain on the roster.

The Steelers have been connected to various free agent receivers throughout the 2024 offseason. So far, they’ve only made depth additions with former Philadelphia Eagle Quez Watkins and former Los Angeles Ram Van Jefferson.

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