Tomlin On Fake Punt: ‘We’re Just Not Going To Allow Those Guys To Be Overaggressive’

The Pittsburgh Steelers went into their bag of tricks in Sunday’s home win over the Cincinnati Bengals as they ran a fake punt in the fourth quarter and it worked perfectly.

With the Steelers ahead 26-14 with just under seven minutes remaining in the fourth quarter, the team faced a 4th down and 7 from their own 40-yard-line. Steelers safety Robert Golden, who plays the up-back position on the punt team, took a direct snap from long snapper Kameron Canaday and immediately threw a 25-yard pass down the right sideline to wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey, who plays the gunner spot. Heyward-Bey, who was left uncovered on the play by the Bengals return team, caught the pass in stride and gained 44 yards before he was finally run out of bounds.

The Steelers went on to kick a field goal after running three more plays inside the Bengals red zone and that increased their lead to 29-14 with 5:17 left in the game.

After the game was over, Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin was asked about the fake punt.

“We’re just not going to allow those guys to be overaggressive and look at what’s presented to us,” Tomlin said. “We’ve got a great deal of confidence in Rob Golden. He’s been playing that position for us for a number of years. That’s not the first time he’s executed that play. So, tip of the cap to Rob G. We’ve got a great deal of confidence in him.”

That was indeed Golden’s second completed pass of his career via a fake punt on Sunday. During the Steelers 2014 regular season opener against the Cleveland Browns, the Steelers safety completed a pass on a fake punt to then cornerback Antown Blake on a 4th and 10 play from the Steelers own 20-yard-line.

  • DirtDawg1964

    Heck of a call. Penalties and fake punts. The only way to extend drives.

  • Zarbor

    Stupid call….but it worked.

  • SkoolHouseRoxx

    Loved it! Would’ve been even sweeter against the Patriots!

  • Edo M

    so tomlin was there lookin’ all smug because i guess it was he who called up that trick play? hey mike…how about making some 1st downs when you only need a yard on 3rd downs….i think they were an 0 for in that situation..just horrible…the steelers have far more offensive talent than to only score field goals in the 2nd half..something is very wrong with the coaching/play calling.

  • Charles Mullins

    Really…5-2 …the play worked…Tomlin didnt call it… and this is your comment….

  • WB Tarleton

    Yeah, Mike T has to shut up and stop missing those blocks in short yardage!

  • WB Tarleton

    In reality, people are judging the result of the call, not the call itself.

    If it did not succeed and the Bengals got within a TD, the wailing and gnashing of teeth would have been unbearably loud.

  • nutty32

    Patriots not dumb enough to leave the gunner completely uncovered. Would be interesting to see if the Bungels did that before in this game or a recent game to tip off the good guys. Would be hard to believe Golden made a cold call audible out of nowhere. Chalk one up for Danny Smith.

  • James Rogers

    If they miss connecting on that pass, the Bengals are on the Steelers side of the field, instead of their own 20, approximately. Foolish call, IMO, given the game situation.

  • Edo M

    think 1 or 2 of those 4 or 5 3rd and 1’s were pass plays. this is typical steelers football..dominate the clock, march up and down the field, and fail to score touchdowns. thats coaching and play calling iMO. it’s been a long time problem. sometimes you get away with it, but in the playoffs one game where you become this inefficient against a good team and see ya next season.

  • dennisdoubleday

    yes, the only way Cincy wins that game is if they get the ball deep in our territory. Tomlin risked that for no reason. He is frustrating sometimes–aggressive when he shouldn’t be and conservative when it’s a good time for risk. like that punt from the 35 in KC.

  • WB Tarleton

    When your LT allows a guy to sneak inside him and blow up a play, that’s execution.

    People never consider that it is not always the vague “coaching” or “play calling.” It’s often a lack of execution or a good play by professional football players on the other team.