Audio from Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin post game press conference following the 2010 week 9 27-21 win against the Cincinnati Bengals on Monday November 8th, 2010. Transcript to follow soon!
Mike Tomlin: “Well, we’re far from perfect, but we’re 6-2. It’s great to get out of here with a win. We have to get well quickly. We have some guys who got banged out of that one for various reasons (for whom) we don’t have detailed medical information for at this time. I will say this though, we made some mistakes but we did enough to win. I like some things that I saw. When we had to, we moved the ball on the ground and put ourselves in position to secure the game. Carson Palmer and company, with some timeouts, are a tough crew to deal with. We’ve seen that flick before. I like this ending a little better than the last time we were here. It’s all a learning process. Along the way, you have to find a way to win the game. Hopefully we’re better for this experience. We have a scalded Patriot outfit coming into our place. We’ll accept the challenges and make no excuses for what we do.”
Question: It seems like you capitalized on their mistakes …
Mike Tomlin: “Initially, we created some opportunities. We caused a fumble on the opening kickoff, a blocked kick — both provided a spark for us. You knew this would be a 60-minute game. It was an awesome atmosphere. The crowd support was spectacular.”
Question: After Ben Roethlisberger’s interception, you seemed to run the ball almost exclusively …
Mike Tomlin: “That’s situational football. That’s a timely manner. That’s a sequence where you have to run and run effectively, which I thought we did.”
Question: It seems like the offensive line was like a carousel with players coming in and out …
Mike Tomlin: “We’re not going to make excuses. They understand our standard and they play to it.”
Question: Can you talk about your plan in terms of throwing a lot on first down?
Mike Tomlin: “We wanted to mix it up, as always is the case. We feel that we’re capable of moving it on the ground or through the air. They’re very familiar with us —not just from a personnel standpoint, but schematically as well.”
Question: The final defensive play came down to James Harrison. What did you think of that play and the way it ended up?
Mike Tomlin: “It’s really quite typical of James and the kind of play that he provides us. He’s a great football player. He’s a detailed guy and a diligent worker. Much has been said about him of late — that’s not the James we know. He makes timely plays for us. We’d like him to be measured on plays like that rather than unfortunate penalties.”
Question: What do you think goes through his mind at that very moment?
Mike Tomlin: “I don’t think anything goes through his mind. I think he’s just trying to make plays to help us win. He’s kind of a flat-liner. He’s very cerebral. It takes that kind of demeanor to make those kind of plays, and he does it time and time again.”
Question: How much of a concern is it that you weren’t able to put them away at the end?
Mike Tomlin: “As I sit here right now, it’s not a concern at all, because we won. When we get back home and watch film, I might be concerned by it.”
Question: Has Jonathan Scott played much guard for you?
Mike Tomlin: “No, but he did tonight. We were getting Matt Spaeth ready to play tackle because Max Starks was down. Thankfully, it didn’t come to that because Maurkice Pouncey was coming back in on the cart and ready to play. Sometimes you get ultra thin. To the credit of our coaches and players, I don’t think anyone blinked, and we didn’t have to go to the ‘Matt Spaeth tackle plan.’ ”
Question: Do you have an injury update on those who got knocked out of the game?
Mike Tomlin: “Juicy (Kemoeatu) has a knee, Max was experiencing stingers, Will Allen got banged out of there, Isaac Redman got banged out of there, Mewelde Moore got banged out of there … That’s just the kind of game it was.”
Question: Casey Hampton was flagged on the blow to Carson Palmer’s knee and wasn’t happy with the call. What is your reaction to the way Casey reacted?
Mike Tomlin: “I didn’t like the way Casey responded because we just have to move on. The next snap is the most important one. We have to focus on the things that we can control — and that’s our readiness for the next snap. We got a little emotional, and I think it carried over into a sequence of events for us. It’s a good lesson to learn when you win.”
Question: You eluded to what happened in that very same spot one year ago. Did you say anything to the guys out on the field?
Mike Tomlin: “I didn’t need to. Those who were there remember it.”
Question: What prompted the play with Antwaan Randle El? Was there something the defense was giving you look-wise that made you think that might work?
Mike Tomlin: “No. Randle El has a nice skill-set. We had it dialed up to go to it if given the opportunity. I think (Chris) Crocker was out of the game, but that wasn’t the determining factor. It was just about us trying to get the play off, and we were prepared to do so.”
Question: Troy Polamalu looked a little down when you were coming into the locker room and you said something to pick him up
Mike Tomlin: “Troy likes to win with style points. You don’t always get what you want. Sometimes you just have to take the win and move on. I don’t mind a guy that’s competitive and wants to win in spectacular fashion. That’s a good problem to have.”