Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin held his post game press conference following the 27-11 win Sunday over the Cleveland Browns and below is a transcript of what he had to say during the session courtesy of steelers.com.
Mike Tomlin: Good team effort. Necessary. We didn’t take this challenge lightly. These guys are undefeated vs. the North. Really I don’t think an AFC North team has lost a home division game. Nice accomplishment for us but not a lot of time to admire the work. We are working on a short week. We respect that as well. We got out of the game relatively injury free, besides Steve McLendon with an ankle that is being evaluated and Curtis Brown with a knee that is also being evaluated. I don’t have any definitive information on that. I probably will by tomorrow by the time I talk to you guys. Appropriate effort. Not pretty in terms of winning the line of scrimmage, but did enough to run the football to have balance. We got turnovers on defense and that aided in our efforts.
Can you talk about the turnovers? At the beginning of the year you weren’t getting any, and today you really did.
Mike Tomlin: I am not going to make more out of it than what it is. Sometimes it’s just opportunities that are presented due to game circumstances. We didn’t fall behind in this football game, so sometimes the opportunities are born out of that. Early in the year we were behind in football games and not a lot of opportunities when you are down multiple scores. It’s probably more a function of that, it’s not anything we are doing, anything mystical or anything of that nature.
Can you talk about the production on both sides of the ball?
Mike Tomlin: I hadn’t measured it in that way. It was enough to get out of here today with a win and that is what I appreciate.
I know you are not about style points, but do you like the way they protected Ben Roethlisberger today?
Mike Tomlin: Some of it can be overblown just in terms of the nature of the way the games are unfolding. I appreciate keeping him clean. When you are not behind you can run the ball, you can play pass and so forth. It aids in that effort. Some of it is game circumstance and not necessarily what it is that we are doing, although I appreciate it.
Can you talk about the way your line held up against their defensive front?
Mike Tomlin: I thought they did a nice job.
How big was this win for you?
Mike Tomlin: It was necessary. Two 4-6 teams fighting, scrapping to stay in this thing. They are not out of it, but today was significant.
The strip by Troy, is that something you are working on in more in practice, creating turnovers?
Mike Tomlin: I am not going to say that play was born out of some increased emphasis of something that we emphasize. But it’s something we have been emphasizing. He made a nice play and to say anything other than that would be taking away credit from him and I am not going to do that
How many times have you had Ben punt in practice?
Mike Tomlin: At least once a week for the last five or six years. That is nothing new. You guys have watched us play.
Are you evaluating the degree of sprain for McLendon’s ankle or is it possible it’s a break?
Mike Tomlin: All I know is he has an ankle injury, which I knew on the field. I haven’t gotten any results on the evaluation. I don’t have any new news, other than what I had when he initially came off the field.