The Pittsburgh Steelers may or may not be looking for a new quarterbacks coach this offseason. Some former Steelers quarterbacks may or may not be interested in the job. But they sure have had fun talking about the state of the team’s quarterback position. We have already detailed some of Bruce Gradkowksi’s comments, and perhaps we’ll get to even more later, but Charlie Batch also recently weighed in for a segment on the team’s website.
The most interesting bit to me was when Missi Matthews asked him what he felt Mason Rudolph had to work on heading into his third season. Rudolph played in 10 games in 2019, starting eight, posting a record of 5-3, but he was injured twice and benched once, with ups and downs in play.
“I think it starts with identifying and understanding the playbook. Mason did a really good job of that”, he said. “He does a nice job of setting his feet, anticipating, and letting his receivers run with the football. That is something I was excited about as the season continued to go on”.
But then he talked about the negatives, and he keyed on one in particular, which is something that frankly we have heard several of his teammates and coaches also say about him. Perhaps he even said it himself at one point. That is, you can’t keep trying to make the perfect play every time.
“I just remember being a young quarterback at that point and going from first season to second season, the number of plays that you play allows you to go out there and now see what you were capable of doing, but also what you need to work on”, Batch recalled from his own experiences.
“So I think that one of the things that he’ll have to understand is, you don’t always have to get into the perfect play”, he added. “Yes, you could change protections, you can do all of this in anticipation of hitting the big play down the field, but it’s okay to throw a hot every now and then. It’s okay to do that, take the five yards, but once you prove that you can beat the blitz, you won’t see that blitz throughout the rest of the game. So that’s something that he has to learn at this point”.
Rudolph completed 176 of 283 pass attempts during the 2019 season, a completion percentage of 62.2. He threw for 1765 yards, averaging 6.2 yards per pass attempt, with 13 touchdowns to nine interceptions. Five of the interceptions came over a six-quarter span, after which he was benched. Two of the other interceptions came via dropped passes by Donte Moncrief and JuJu Smith-Schuster.