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Old 11-29-2011, 09:56 PM   #1
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Default Mike Tomlin press conference

Mike Tomlin press conference
Posted: Tuesday, November 29, 2011 2:38 pm

Excerpts of the Mike Tomlin press conference that reviews this past Sunday's win in Kansas City and previews Sunday's game against the Bengals:

Opening statement

"I'll start with a quick assessment of Sunday night's game and our play. Like we talked about after the game, there were some encouraging things, particularly the contributions from the young and developing players, guys such as Weslye Saunders, Ryan Mundy, Jason Worilds and others. Those are the kinds of contributions that we need from our young and emerging players as we continue to push through our journey. We acknowledge that our A-players have to deliver for us, and deliver for us consistently. But we are going to need some help in some obscure places, or from some young guys, who need to continue to find ways to win games as we go on this journey, and to be honest with you, to continue to grow as a football team, and emerge in some of their developmental roles. I like the development of those men and some others. I thought it was pivotal in the football game.

"There were some other positives. We got the football. We got four turnovers defensively. That was in an area that we wanted to improve in. Let's hope that continues. Some negative things that I thought, from third downs offensively, that may have been our worst performance of the season. We acknowledge that. We have to get back on a positive track. I think we might be second in the league on third downs. We've been very consistent in that area but we weren't on Sunday night. I thought that was a difference in our area of production offensively. It didn't produce more snap opportunities, and it didn't keep drives alive. That's the price you pay when you're not producing on third downs. We were 3-for-11 in the football game, so you are not going to have a very fluent performance when you perform like that on third downs. And we were 1-for-3 in the red area. One of those was a situation where we fumbled the ball, and we got no points early in the football game. That's always significant. If we want to be a good team and beat good people, we have to get seven points when we are in the red area. And if we don't, we at least have to put some points on the board. That was a factor in our offensive production.

"I would like to see more production out of our return game, both on punts and kickoffs. It's been a benefit to us for the better part of the season. I didn't think it was overly affective on Sunday night.

"From an injury standpoint, LaMarr Woodley has been in the building today, and he has worked out. He appears to be moving toward game readiness. We will watch him throughout the week to solidify that but we like where he is. Chris Carter is questionable at best with a hamstring injury. Larry Foote has a hamstring injury. We are going to watch him, although it's to a lesser extent than Chris Carter's. We are going to watch him throughout the week to see if he will be available for us. Troy Polamalu hasn't had any concussion symptoms since we got back here. All things are positive in terms of his potential participation this week. Obviously we will continue to err on the side of caution. He will have to pass a battery of tests in order to participate. We are comfortable at this juncture that it will happen. Again, we don't want to assume anything with his health or anyone else. Maurkice Pouncey is coming off a stomach virus. It may limit him at the early portions of the week. He's dehydrated, and he's lost a significant amount of weight. We just have to take care of that young man, and make sure he is pushing forward towards the weekend. We expect guys like Arnaz Battle and Stevenson Sylvester, who missed the last outing, to at least put themselves in a better position to perform this week. We will look at how they perform during the course of the practice week and see if we need to utilize those guys in preparation and play against the Cincinnati Bengals."

Re: Using Emmanuel Sanders instead of Antonio Brown on kickoff returns:

"We've always had a desire to use both of those men in the return game, as both kick and punt returners. We did it when they were both rookies. We've done it less this year, primarily due to the health of Emmanuel. He appears to be moving in the right direction in regards to that. So we just want to keep both of those men in play, not only as kickoff return men but punt return men as well."

Were your receivers not getting as much separation as they normally get, and how much credit goes to the Kansas City defense?

"I think if you are talking specifically about third downs, you start by acknowledging that those guys did a nice job in terms of putting together a plan and executing it. Coach Crennel has experience going against us. I think that was utilized in terms of their preparation. Those guys did a nice job of staying close to people. We acknowledge that we have to be better than we were on Sunday night. We need more separation. We need to make more competitive catches in order to keep the chains moving and keep ourselves on the field, to give us more snaps, to keep the drive alive and ultimately, to put more points on the board."

Does third-down success vary each week?

"I think it has a life of its own each week. I think that was our worst performance of this year. I mentioned we are second in the league on third downs. It hasn't been a problem for us but we don't want it to become a consistent problem. We need to address it quickly, and make sure it remains in our rearview mirror."

When was Troy Polamalu symptom free, and how close was he to going back into the game?

"He was asymptomatic relatively quickly, and I am talking about Sunday night. If we are going to err, we are going to err on the side of caution when it comes to health, particularly from a head injury standpoint. I have no issue with that. We lean on the expert advice of our medical staff. Troy has been good. We anticipate it being a non-issue moving forward this week. Like I said earlier, we are not going to assume anything with a player's health, particularly when we are talking about a head injury."

Did he lobby to get back into the game?

"He always does ... not only him but many others. Oftentimes that is the case. That's why we have medical experts there to assist us in terms of decision making. We will always lean on their expertise."

Re: The scuffle before the game:

"It was minor to my understanding. We were in the area along the 50-yard line, quarterbacks and receivers working like they normally do. Their secondary came up the visiting boundary to work in their area. There were some words exchanged. It was quickly dispersed. I thought all parties involved did a nice job diffusing the situation. I'm talking about players and personnel with both teams. Really it was a non factor. We were there to play football."

Mike Wallace was hard on himself after the game because he dropped some passes. How confident are you that he will bounce back and return to form pretty quickly?

"I am confident that he is going to work to do that but I will let his performance speak for his performance."

Has Antonio Brown's increased production been a result of teams paying more attention to Wallace?

"It's probably both. In one instance you are talking about a second-year guy [Brown] that we acknowledge is emerging, and not only in terms of what he is capable of doing but how we utilize him and how we plan to utilize him. Also, you are talking about another guy (Wallace) that got behind a lot of defenses and racked up a lot of statistics early in the season. I'd imagine defenses are adjusting to that. It's probably a little bit of both. What it is specifically, I don't have the answer to it. I am more concerned about us consistently moving the ball as a unit, and ringing up the scoreboard."

Re: Using Hines Ward more last game:

"Like I said before the previous game, we are going to let the participation of our guys be determined based on how we feel they can help us win on a week-to-week basis. Obviously, we felt he had a bigger role in this matchup, and he performed in such a manner. That's always going to be the case. We are in the process of formulating a similar plan this week in regards to how we will utilize Hines and others. We've dealt with injuries over the course of this season, and what's been proven to us is that we have a lot of guys that are capable of helping us win. It provides awesome dilemmas for us moving forward. Ones that as a coach, I embrace. Who do you use, how much do you use them, are good issues and problems to have from my perspective."

Does your opponent dictate who you will use?

"It does but they are different from the last time we played them because of the lack of Leon Hall. I wouldn't make any judgments based on how we are formulating a plan based on the last matchup, because we are a little bit different and they are obviously different."

Re: The play of Jason Worilds:

"He's doing some nice things. More than anything, he's doing a nice job of not only getting some extra reps on defense but his special teams performance hasn't waned. We have a no job too small mentality. It's good to see a young guy emerge and get more snaps with the first-unit defense, but also continue to embrace the job that he's had for quite some time, being a special teams player for us."

Is this the same 8-3 team this year as last year's 8-3 team?

"I hadn't thought about comparing that one iota. I don't take that approach to it. I try to stay singularly focused on the journey that we are all living at this juncture. Last year is last year."

Have you been preparing for Cleveland since it's a short week next week?

"I am not concerned about it. It's a short week for Cleveland as well. We will deal with it when we get to it."
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Old 11-30-2011, 09:54 AM   #2

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Default Re: Mike Tomlin press conference

Coach, it's third and 2 and you go for a 50 yard pass play, why not go for a short pass to Miller and pick up the first down?
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Old 11-30-2011, 11:41 AM   #3
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Default Re: Mike Tomlin press conference

Originally Posted by NoFieldFive View Post
Coach, it's third and 2 and you go for a 50 yard pass play, why not go for a short pass to Miller and pick up the first down?
Because airhead Arians was trying to "out smart" the other team. Going for a first down on 3rd and short is just to obvious for "smart" coach like the airhead.
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Old 11-30-2011, 11:42 AM   #4
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Default Re: Mike Tomlin press conference

i hope we get woodley back and healthy for the bengals, along with troy
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Old 11-30-2011, 11:46 AM   #5
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Default Re: Mike Tomlin press conference

He makes the comment that Crennel has game-planned for us before. Well, haven't we seen Crennel's gameplan a few times too? Shouldn't an offense with the firepower we have be dictating the game? Screw Romeo Crennel. With the personnel we have on offense, our coaches should be making Romeo scratch his head & answer stupid questions about what went wrong!

Coach, since you're on a roll "acknowledging" things, why don't we acknowledge that Arian's playcalling cost us points? What happened to the quick routes and underneath stuff that caused so much trouble for the Pats? Where was the no-huddle? Why does Arian's continue to scrap what works?
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