Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph left Sunday’s game with a concussion after appearing to be knocked out cold from a hit by Baltimore Ravens safety Earl Thomas II in the third quarter. Rudolph left Heinz Field to be further evaluated at a hospital.
Steelers players immediately motioned for athletic trainers to come on the field as Rudolph lay motionless on the ground from Thomas’ hit to his chin after completing a 26-yard pass to James Washington with 7:29 remaining in the third quarter.
Thomas was whistled for roughing the passer, and the crowd at Heinz Field responded with a chant begging the officials to eject him.
Players took a knee around Rudolph as trainers tended to the quarterback, and wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster was overcome by emotion. Trainers removed Rudolph’s face mask while his helmet was still on.
The injury cart quickly went out on the field to retrieve Rudolph and a stretcher was waiting beside him, but Rudolph stood up after a few minutes and was able to walk off the field slowly with the help of Zach Banner and B.J. Finney.
Rudolph had both his arms around his linemen as they assisted him off the field. He was then immediately helped into the tunnel as a swarm of team personnel moved with him.
Prior to the injury, Rudolph completed 13 of 20 passes for 131 yards and a touchdown.
Backup quarterback Devlin Hodges replaced Rudolph. Hodges, a Samford product, was a practice squad quarterback, elevated to the 53-man roster when Ben Roethlisberger suffered a season-ending elbow injury in the Week 2 loss to Seattle.