A quarterback’s best friend is his offensive line. Using that as as our gauge, there’s no one better to have on your side than Maurkice Pouncey.
No one stepped in more aggressively to defend Mason Rudolph than Pouncey did last night. So much so it will cost him the next three games unless the suspension gets reduced on appeal.
Just about a year ago, Pouncey stepped in to defend his quarterback. In another primetime, Thursday game against the Carolina Panthers in 2018, safety Eric Reid was ejected for an illegal hit on a sliding Ben Roethlisberger. Pouncey came flying in, getting into Reid’s face and defending his QB. I’ve cut up both moments in the clip below.
After the Panthers’ game, Pouncey said he wanted to protect his quarterback, the central figure to the team.
“Ben’s the franchise quarterback,” Pouncey told ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler. “He means a lot to this organization, obviously to this football team. I could see if he was pulling his shoulder down trying to hit a guy, but he was giving himself up. That shouldn’t happen, but Eric Reid did apologize, so I give him credit for that.”
As we’ve written about today, Pouncey made no apologies – nor should he have – for his actions last night.
“At this point, who cares? My man got hit in the helmet. I’ll serve whatever penalty it is.”
He was asked if he had ever been that angry in a game before.
“Nah. I blacked out. I don’t remember it, really.”
One can only imagine what Pouncey’s reaction would’ve been if that was Ben Roethlisberger, his best friend on the team, instead of Rudolph. But regardless of who was under center, and to be fair, the line has a lot of respect for Rudolph, Pouncey wasn’t going to let Garrett’s malicious actions slide. His job is to protect the quarterback during the play (a task not always done Thursday, unfortunately) and after it.
Pouncey’s a real dude and Thursday was another example of it.