Ben Roethlisberger Fantasy Outlook Clouded After Being Replaced by Mason Rudolph Following Injury

PITTSBURGH, PA - AUGUST 17: Mason Rudolph #2 of the Pittsburgh Steelers drops back to pass in the first quarter during a preseason game against the Kansas City Chiefs at Heinz Field on August 17, 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images)
Kansas City Chiefs v Pittsburgh Steelers | Justin Berl/Getty Images

After getting crushed 33-3 by the New England Patriots in Week 1, things somehow got worse for the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 2. They had a 10-7 lead at the half against the Seattle Seahawks, but were forced to start the second half with Mason Rudolph under center, and not Ben Roethlisberger.

Big Ben sustained an elbow injury to his throwing arm early in the game, but ultimately played the entire first half, despite a trip to the locker room.

The Roethlisberger injury led to Rudolph's first NFL passing attempts, including his first-career TD to Vance McDonald early in the fourth quarter. Rudolph showed some promise heading into the 2018 NFL Draft, having thrown for a combined 8,995 yards, 65 touchdowns and 13 interceptions in his final two years at Oklahoma State. However, it's hard to imagine the third-round pick being anything but a downgrade from Roethlisberger.

The Steelers led the NFL in pass attempts in the 2018 season, and this downgrade at QB also hurts the fantasy football value for the rest of the skill-position players in the Pittsburgh offense.

It's still not time to quit on JuJu Smith-Schuster or James Conner, who have proven to be among the fantasy football elite at their respective positions, but if this Roethlisberger injury turns out to be a long-term issue, they'll be downgraded accordingly.

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Jason Schandl is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Jason Schandl also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username Jaymun. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.

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