Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph has heard the racial slur claim made by Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett and he denied the claim last week. But on Sunday after the Steelers 16-10 win over the Cincinnati Bengals, he doubled down on his statement. Rudolph was asked about saying a racial slur to Garrett during their fight nearly two weeks ago and said he doesn't understand why Garrett would say that.
“It’s totally untrue. I couldn’t believe it. I couldn’t believe he would go that route after the fact," Rudolph said who was benched during the game on Sunday against the Bengals for his poor play. "It is what it is. I think I've moved on and we're good to do now."
Rudolph was then asked if he said anything to Garrett that may have set him off. He replied, "Absolutely not. Not even close."
Garrett made the claim during his suspension appeal hearing last week. It did not help his case as he will remain suspended indefinitely and he will miss the rest of the 2019 season. Once the NFL made its decision, Garrett released a statement that said he stands by his claim.
“I was assured that the hearing was space that afforded the opportunity to speak openly and honestly about the incident that led to my suspension,” Garrett said. “This was not meant for public dissemination, or was it a convenient attempt to justify my actions or restore my image in the eyes of those I disappointed. I know what I heard. Whether my opponent’s comment was born out of frustration or ignorance, I cannot say. But his actions do not excuse my lack of restraint in the moment, and I truly regret the impact this has had on the league, the Browns and our devoted fans.”
Even though Rudolph denies saying anything to Garrett, he does have to pay for the role in the fight where he got hit in the head with his own helmet. It was recently reported Rudolph will have to pay a $50,000 fine while Garrett will pay a fine of $45,623 to go along with his suspension. Rudolph will not be suspended, but after throwing for just 85 yards and one interception on Sunday, it's very likely that he doesn't play next week when the Steelers and Browns meet for the second and final time this year.