Tired of hearing all the nasty accusations about his staff and players, Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin turned the conversation around and delivered a subtle but successful shot at the Cincinnati Bengals.
“This is what I’m gonna do about all of that so that we can move on. I think it’s appropriate,” Tomlin said Tuesday, via NFL.com. “Cincinnati is afforded the opportunity to sit around days after the game and rehash what happened. We’re not afforded that opportunity. We’ve got a challenge – a formidable one – waiting on us in Denver. I said what I said after the game. I thought it appropriately summarized the play. We got respect for those guys. We understood what was at stake for them and us.”
Bengals players have said many things since Saturday night’s 18-16 loss to the Steelers. The most significant charge came from Adam Jones, who committed the final 15-yard penalty and set up Pittsburgh’s game-winning field goal. He accused Antonio Brown of “faking” his head injury. Brown is in concussion protocol and may miss this weekend’s Divisional Round matchup with the Denver Broncos.
The Steelers were also accused of giving a game ball to coach Joey Porter, who was on the field in the aftermath of Brown’s injury. Tomlin dismissed that rumor as “untrue.”
His greater message: The Steelers have bigger things to worry about right now. Like how to beat the AFC’s No. 1 seed on the road, potentially without Brown and running back DeAngelo Williams (foot).
“We’re moving on. We have to,” Tomlin said. “We can’t waste one iota of time living in the past. It’s not gonna help us beat the Denver Broncos, so I’m not gonna address it in anyway, because addressing it just leads to another question, whether it’s to me or someone that plays for us and that’s not gonna help us this week.”