Former Bills QB Officially Named Steelers Starter in Tight Three-way Race

Mitch Trubisky throws a pass before a Buffalo Bills game.

After spending a season behind Josh Allen in Buffalo, Mitch Trubisky is on his way back to being a starter in the NFL.

The former Bills reserve has been the de facto starter during training camp with the Pittsburgh Steelers, and head coach Mike Tomlin made it official this week. He noted that Trubisky is currently the starter, though he gave credit to veteran Mason Rudolph and rookie Kenny Pickett in what he said has been a close race.

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Although most Steelers had been operating under the assumption that Trubisky would be the starter in Week 1, Tomlin officially announced on Aug. 9 that he would be under center if the season began today.

Trubisky said he was happy to be back as a starter after spending the better part of four seasons as the Chicago Bears’ starter.

“It means a lot,” Trubisky told CBS Sports HQ’s Jonathan Jones and Bryant McFadden. “Since I came here, I came here for the opportunity to start and lead a team. I’ve definitely been given that and I’m trying to take advantage of that every day.

“I think playing for a coach like Coach Tomlin gives you confidence. I’ve learned a lot since I’ve been here. He’s taught me a lot, and I think it really gives everyone on the team confidence the way he prepares and the way he knows the game. It’s been a lot of fun, and it means a lot to me and I’m looking forward to it. We’re building day by day and if we were to implement it, it would come out first, and I’m looking forward to it.”

It’s unclear how strong of a grip Trubisky has on the starting job, as Tomlin said all three quarterbacks have looked good at times.

“They’re making it tough on us,” Tomlin told CBS Sports. “It’s tough to manage three capable guys, but they’re forcing us to do it because they’re making the plays they need to make. They’re anticipating, the timing has been good, [and] the accuracy has been good.”

Many believe Trubisky could struggle, as the team would move Pickett if he struggled. If Trubisky remains the starter as the season progresses, he would face the Bills when the teams play on Oct. 9. He saw limited playing time behind Allen last season, but looked strong in his appearances, completing 75 percent of his passes and running for a touchdown.

Another former Bills quarterback gets a chance.

Trubisky may not be the only former Bills quarterback with a chance to start this season. Tyrod Taylor, who helped snap Buffalo’s 17-year playoff drought with a 9-7 season in 2017, took reps with the first team at New York Giants training camp when starter Daniel Jones struggled.

While Jones is expected to start the season as the Giants’ starter, Dan Duggan of The Athletic noted that Taylor has been the best quarterback in training camp.

“It would be hard to argue that Jones looked better than Taylor through the first 10 practices of camp,” Duggan wrote.

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