By Michael K Reynolds
It’s no secret one of Coach Mike Tomlin’s least favorite aspects of his job is conducting press conferences. Following the loss against the Oakland Raiders, who knows if he’ll even show up for his next presser? Fortunately, with a need for some comic relief this season, we’ve gone ahead and speculated on exactly what might be said.
Mike Tomlin: I will begin by endeavoring to apologize for my performance in all three phases of last week’s press conference. As a coach of a team with only two wins it was well below the line for me to be so…well, snarky. Just because I think of all of you reporters as a bunch of lie-on-the-couch, potato-chip-eating, know-nothing wannabes, this is not sufficient in and of itself for me to disrespect you. I’ll take your questions now. Oh. Can someone help me keep track of time?
Coach. Now, a couple days removed, what are your thoughts about your team’s overall performance against the Raiders?
Tomlin: We don’t dwell in the past. We don’t have the luxury to live there like you people. Our cards are already fully dealt and we’re all in for next Sunday’s gladiator match. This is the business we’re in. Our reality. My coaches, the players, and even the ball boys, have been putting the entirety of our focus on what’s on the horizon, burying ourselves in reels of tape and chalking up our hands with game plans. All of this in total preparation for the confrontation which lies ahead. That is, against the New York Football Giants.
Uh…coach, you don’t play the Giants next Sunday. You play the New England Patriots.
Tomlin: (Long pause). Of course that’s the case. For competitive reasons we do not wish to show all of cards. Are you sure? We have to play Tom Brady? And Wes Welker?
The Steelers have not been able to get off to a good start at any of the games this season. Are there some adjustments that need to be made in terms of preparation?
Tomlin: Our evaluation process each and every week is deep and all encompassing. We consider the first quarter, and even the first half of the game to be part of that evaluation process. So while our opponents are burdened by being focused on the first play of the game, we consider it an edge that our evaluation is still in full swing. You, as a mere reporter, or fan for that matter, might see it as Terrelle Pryor gashing us for 93 yards. However; we see this as invaluable, verifiable, live scouting information. In this particular case we were able to conclude, “Wow, that young man is fast.” This is precisely why we always defer when winning the coin toss. Hey. Is somebody watching the clock for me?
Coach, it appears that this team struggles with games in faraway time zones. We’ve lost eight of these types of games in a row and it has been written in several newspapers that perhaps something needs to be changed in how these games are approached. What do you say?
Tomlin: You all know I don’t take notice of what you say. I don’t care about what you write. But I am afraid that my players do. I would appreciate if you would stop messing with their heads with your uninformed nonsense. For that matter. Who wrote about Shaun Suisham last week?
On special teams, why is Felix Jones still returning kicks and Zoltan still punting?
Tomlin: Felix has the pedigree. Zoltan is left footed. You people have too much time on your hands.
Why not have Emmanuel Sanders handle kickoff returns?
Tomlin: Everybody knows the Patriots will be making a play for Sanders during upcoming free agency. I think I owe it to Coach Belichick to make sure the player is whole.
Speaking of Jones. How is it that he is still ahead of Jonathan Dwyer on the running back depth chart?
Tomlin: You don’t understand my doghouse. It’s like the roach motel. Once you check in you can’t check out. That goes for all of you as well. In fact, I am through with this discussion. Except if you have any questions about Le’Veon Bell. That is, unless we’re out of time. Has anyone seen my watch?