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Old 03-28-2007, 08:27 AM   #1
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Default Tomlin's Aggressiveness Shows Up At Every Turn

Loved this article....


Tomlin's aggressiveness shows up at every turn
By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

PHOENIX -- He preaches aggressiveness, and this week Mike Tomlin showed just what that might mean in his new job as the Steelers' head coach.

USAirways, Tomlin said, lost the bag he checked on his direct flight to the NFL meetings in Phoenix from Pittsburgh and gave him the run-around since that occurred Saturday night. Sunday, he was told his bag was in Phoenix and would be delivered to his hotel within four hours. He waited; no bags. He called, again and again.

Monday, Tomlin rode to the airport "to dig it out myself."

"I get over there, and they tell me the bag is not there," Tomlin was saying at breakfast yesterday morning. "I said, 'I've been talking to your call center all weekend, and they said the bag is here.'

"They said, 'I don't care what they told you on the 1-800 number, your bag isn't here.' "

He was offered a $25 voucher on his next flight for his troubles.

"Well, somewhere during the conversation, I see my bag behind her in a pile," Tomlin said. "I said, 'That's my bag!' She said, 'Sir, your bag's not here, the computer says'... I said 'I understand what the computer says, but I'm looking at my bag! It's a black bag, Pittsburgh Steelers. It's my bag.'

"So, I walk around the counter and at that point, she started to get mad. I pulled the tag off and showed her it was my bag. I had to dig it out myself."

Tomlin related that story to a handful of writers gathered around him yesterday as the morning sun popped up in the desert. Perhaps, he did not mean it to be that way, but the narrative served to portray his approach to his job as Steelers coach. He wants to be aggressive, something he has repeated many times since his arrival here.

He also began revealing his plans for the Steelers in 2007 and what he thinks of some of his players. Yesterday, for instance, he publicly committed for the first time to staying with a 3-4 as his base defense next season.

"I know what it does to offenses, I really do," Tomlin said. "It's all about the personnel you have. We have the best 3-4 people in the world, I think. That's what we're going to do."

The more Tomlin looked at the way the Steelers played the 3-4, the more it convinced him to stick with it under coordinator Dick LeBeau rather than try to convert to a 4-3 Tampa 2, the type he coached with the Buccaneers and the Minnesota Vikings.

"To me, I was excited because I came into this league, a mecca, if you will, for the 4-3 defense in the Tampa 2, working with Tony Dungy and Monte Kiffin," Tomlin said. "Now, I'm working every day with what I believe to be the mecca for a 3-4. If you look at my growth development as a coach, man, it doesn't get any better than that. To be around Monte Kiffin and Dick LeBeau, I think you guys will agree with that. It doesn't get any better than that."

The most unsettled position on his Steelers defense may be at cornerback, where Ike Taylor has attracted much of the new coach's attention. Taylor, who signed a fat contract extension before the season began, was benched by coach Bill Cowher midway through it. One of Tomlin's big jobs is to salvage him.

"He's big, he's physical, he's fast. That's what I look at," Tomlin said. "What specifically happened last year in terms of his play, it's irrelevant to me.

"He's capable of a lot. He's capable of being a dominant player, and it's important that he embraces that as we move forward. I know that maybe he's disappointed in how he performed last year. Hopefully, that's fuel for him as we approach this year. ... I know he has the physical tools to be an elite corner. Our job and his job is to make sure that happens."

The mirror of that position on offense comes at wide receiver and whether or not the Steelers have the kind of talent at the position to make defenses respect their passing game.

"There are some questions there," Tomlin said. "It's a big year for Santonio [Holmes], of what kind of player he's going to be. He and I have talked quite a bit about that. That jump a player makes from his rookie year to his second year is critical in terms of what kind of career he's going to have. He's made some plays, he's had some success. He needs to move forward.

"I think some of the things that Nate Washington is capable of has been evident, studying the tape. He needs to move forward.

"I like what the group is capable of being. Satisfied? No. Until you get to know me, you'll realize that very rarely am I satisfied. At the same time, I'm not negative."

There also are the ongoing questions about Ben Roethlisberger and Tomlin's emerging relationship with his quarterback.

"He's a unique guy," Tomlin said. "He's in the building, he's taking an active part in the development of the playbook. He's working well with" coordinator Bruce Arians and quarterbacks coach Ken Anderson.

"I studied the personality types in this game and you know a guy who is uniquely talented like him, a competitor, a ridiculous competitor, a very prideful guy. I haven't been surprised in my reactions to him in terms of maybe what I thought him to be in a personality standpoint."

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/pp/07087/772998.stm

Last edited by alittlejazzbird; 03-28-2007 at 08:28 AM. Reason: added P-G link
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Old 03-28-2007, 08:32 AM   #2
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Default Re: Tomlin's Aggressiveness Shows Up At Every Turn

Looks like US Airways strikes again! so typical.

What do you guys think about Tomlin's comments on Ben? Sounds like Tomlin's opinion of him has changed (and improved?)
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Old 03-28-2007, 08:39 AM   #3
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Default Re: Tomlin's Aggressiveness Shows Up At Every Turn

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Looks like US Airways strikes again! so typical.

What do you guys think about Tomlin's comments on Ben? Sounds like Tomlin's opinion of him has changed (and improved?)
Don't even get me started on US Airways...trying to get from Newark to Pittsburgh, oy, what a mess. I'm strictly a Continental flyer Newark-Pittsburgh now...still not great, but definitely fewer problems.

Regarding Tomlin's comments on Ben, I'm not sure that anything has improved, per se. I think the relationship is growing and developing, just as Tomlin said it would in his earliest interviews. He came in with no preconceived ideas about his players and vowed to make his own judgments based on the experiences he has with them. Sounds to me like he's pleased with Ben's work, but as he said, Ben's personality "type" is pretty much what he thought, and he meant that as a big positive.
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Old 03-28-2007, 08:53 AM   #4
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Default Re: Tomlin's Aggressiveness Shows Up At Every Turn

The more I hear about Tomlin and how he handles things the more I understand why he was hired. This guy has a great amount of passion and doesn't take crap from anyone. I hope he is able to make this team turn around from last year's disappointments.
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Old 03-28-2007, 08:58 AM   #5
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Default Re: Tomlin's Aggressiveness Shows Up At Every Turn

and another great article (kinda long):

http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pitt.../s_499908.html

Quote:
TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Wednesday, March 28, 2007


PHOENIX - Mike Tomlin and Dick LeBeau do not see eye-to-eye, and LeBeau's 3-4 defense will eventually move from Heinz Field to the bottom of the Allegheny River.
Oh, and when Tomlin returns to Pittsburgh from the NFL owners meetings, he plans on mailing copies of the Steelers' playbook to the Baltimore Ravens, Cleveland Browns and Cincinnati Bengals.

Tomlin said Tuesday at the NFL owners meetings that he is pleasantly surprised at not only how well he and the Steelers' defensive coordinator have worked together, but also at how similar they are when it comes to a most important subject in Pittsburgh: how to play stingy, teeth-rattling defense.

"I think if you look at the Minnesota tapes from last year and the Pittsburgh tapes, I think you'll find similar playing personalities," said Tomlin, who was the Vikings' defensive coordinator in 2006. "I didn't know that going in (to the Steelers job). It's becoming clearer and clearer to me every day. It's awesome, too good to be true."

Tomlin and LeBeau, who have watched plenty of game film together, have subscribed to different means in producing the kind of attacking style that both seem to favor.

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Old 03-28-2007, 09:40 AM   #6
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Default Re: Tomlin's Aggressiveness Shows Up At Every Turn

Everytime he has an interview he comes out looking more and more like the right man for the job. I am ready for the season already just to see what he can do. The LeBeau-Tomlin Defense could be scary good...
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Old 03-28-2007, 10:02 AM   #7
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Default Re: Tomlin's Aggressiveness Shows Up At Every Turn

I really like what I hear from Tomlin. I believe he is going to be a better X's and O's coach than Cowher(had Cowher been a better X's and O's coach he would have 5 Superbowl rings). I hope he at least comes close to Cowher in the motivation and mentoring aspects(I believe most of the players would have taken a bullet for Cowher).
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Old 03-28-2007, 10:14 AM   #8
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Default Re: Tomlin's Aggressiveness Shows Up At Every Turn

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Originally Posted by moedap View Post
I really like what I hear from Tomlin. I believe he is going to be a better X's and O's coach than Cowher(had Cowher been a better X's and O's coach he would have 5 Superbowl rings). I hope he at least comes close to Cowher in the motivation and mentoring aspects(I believe most of the players would have taken a bullet for Cowher).
I agree with that 100%.He'll put the team in the right position to win in the playoffs.I think Tomlin will be able to do what Cowher couldn't...beat Bellichcik and the Patriots in the playoffs.

I think most of the players would have taken a bullit for Cowher also.And I think once the team gets to know Tomlin,he'll get the same respect from most of his players.The ones who stay loyal to men no longer with the team (Cowher,Whisenhut,Grimm,etc.) I think will find themselves as free agents or traded.
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Old 03-28-2007, 10:18 AM   #9
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Default Re: Tomlin's Aggressiveness Shows Up At Every Turn

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I believe most of the players would have taken a bullet for Cowher.
You know, I don't know that many would have taken a bullet for Cowher---except maybe Joey Porter. But Cowher was exceptional at creating a locker room atmosphere where players were ready to take bullets for each other--to me thats the most important thing. I really have no doubt Tomlin will beable to do the same in his own way.
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Old 03-28-2007, 10:23 AM   #10
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Default Re: Tomlin's Aggressiveness Shows Up At Every Turn

Tomlin has gotta love life right now....there is so much talent on this football team....he has the opportunity to start his HC'ing career as a winner...much like Mr. Chinny Chin-Chin.

Its gotta be nice for a defensive minded coach to walk into his office on day 1 and say to himself:

"Well, I have Troy Polamalu and Casey Hampton. What do I want to do defensively? Hmmmmm"

How bout what ever the hell you want Coach!!!!!!!

GO GET EM!!!!
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