Devlin Hodges Steelers: Who Is Pittsburgh's New QB Who Replaced Mason Rudolph After Brutal Hit?

The NFL season is barely five weeks old but the Pittsburgh Steelers are already down to their third quarterback.

The team lost veteran quarterback Ben Roethlisberger for the season after he sustained an elbow injury in the 28-26 defeat at home against the Seattle Seahawks in Week 2, and on Sunday it was left without backup signal caller Mason Rudolph.

The quarterback was on the receiving end of a brutal hit from Baltimore safety Earl Thomas II as the Steelers lost 26-23 at home to the Ravens in overtime.

Rudolph was hit on the chin halfway through the third quarter, after firing a pass towards James Washington.

The Steelers signal caller had scrambled left to extend the play after the pocket had collapsed and had no room to escape Thomas as the Ravens safety came charging towards him.

A few worrying moments followed as Rudolph lay on the ground motionless while players frantically waved medical staff onto the pitch. Eventually the second-year quarterback left the field with the help of the trainers, before being evaluated at a local hospital.

The player was responsive as he left the field and ESPN reported he was "doing well" and was resting at home.

With Rudolph off the field, the Steelers turned to Devlin Hodges, who looked accomplished in his NFL debut and finished the game 7-of-9 for 68 yards, recording his team's longest run as he rushed for 21 yards in the final period.

"Mason is my guy," Hodges was quoted as saying by ESPN. "I would say he is one of my closer friends on the team. He has really taken me in. You might see me on the sideline kind of just standing there, it wasn't because I was freaking out about me going in, I was just thinking about Mason and what's up with him and is he OK. After a minute, he was just lying there, he wasn't even moving. That is just tough to look at."

Devlin Hodges, Pittsburgh Steelers l
Devlin Hodges #6 of the Pittsburgh Steelers looks to pass during the second half against the Baltimore Ravens at Heinz Field on October 6, 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Joe Sargent/Getty

Rudolph has been placed in the league's concussion protocol and given the severity of the hit there are major doubts he will be available next week, which means Hodges could become Pittsburgh's third starting quarterback in six weeks when the Steelers face the Chargers in Los Angeles on Sunday Night Football.

A product of Samford University, the 23-year-old went undrafted this year and signed for the Steelers in May, before being waived at the end of August as the team finalized its 53-man roster.

The Alabama native, however, was signed up to the Steelers practice squad just over a week later and was elevated to the Steelers roster after Roethlisberger was ruled out for the season with an elbow injury.

Hodges, who at 6 foot 1 inch is four inches shorter than Rudolph, was a starting quarterback throughout his four years at Stamford and was named the Southern Conference Offensive Player of the Year three times.

He finished his college career with an average of 3,646 passing yards and 27.7 touchdown passes per season, with a completion rate of 69.1 percent.

During his four years at Samford, the Bulldogs reached the FCS playoffs twice, losing in the first round to Youngstown State in 2016 and to Kennesaw State at the same stage a year later.

Devlin Hodges Steelers: Who Is Pittsburgh's New QB Who Replaced Mason Rudolph After Brutal Hit? | Sports
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