Steelers HC Mike Tomlin conference call (1.6.21)

Steelers Head Coach Mike Tomlin conference call:

On if he heads into this week’s game with any trepidation due to the number of positive COVID-19 results the Browns have had in recent weeks:

“No, I do not have any concerns regarding COVID that are outside of the norm. No.”


On if the Steelers have gone through all of the team’s contact tracing and did not have any players or staff impacted by Sunday’s game against the Browns:

“We are adhering to whatever protocols prescribed by New York, and we have not had any issues as it relates to what you asked.”


On how the Steelers are preparing for changes to the Browns coaching staff due to COVID-19 protocols and if that impacts his team’s preparation this week, including with offensive coordinator Alex Van Pelt calling offensive plays:

“We do not know how much of a difference it is going to make. That is going to be discovered in-stadium. They do have 16 games of video that kind of displays their personality. I do not imagine that is going to change significantly. I do not know that it can change significantly. We are just going on our in-game experiences against them and the other 14 games of video that outline their personality.”


On his relationship with Head Coach Kevin Stefanski and if he has reached out to Stefanski with what Stefanski is going through now:

“I have not at this point. I do not know if I will or not. There are just not a lot of moments for that in the construction of the week as you prepare.”


On RB Nick Chubb, Chubb’s long TD run last game and if he expects to see a lot more of Chubb this week compared to last week:

“I am not in control of how much we see of him, but I respect his game. I have always respected his game. I try to tell you guys the truth, and so, I did not see anything last weekend in the stadium that I had not seen over the course of his career in Cleveland or even in Athens, Georgia prior to that. There is a consistency in his play that is really awesome.”


On what makes the Steelers pass rush so ‘special,’ no matter who is playing:

“I am not describing it as ‘special.’”


On how he would describe the Steelers pass rush and its success:

“We are hard working. We have to apply pressure to the quarterback. We work continually at it, and our agenda does not change, regardless of who is playing.”


On if he has decided who will be the Steelers’ K this week and Steelers K Matthew Wright’s performance last week:

“I am appreciative of the efforts of Matt and what he has provided us. We are going to let the week sort out who kicks for us, and specifically, Bos’ (Steelers K Chris Boswell) availability and his effectiveness when working.”


On the Steelers offense completing multiple vertical passes in the past six quarters and if ‘the tough times are behind the offense and it got back on track’:

“I am not anticipating anything or seeking comfort in any area. We are just working hard, and we understand at the end of the week, the talk is going to stop. We are working hard for that, but I do not have any level of anticipation based on what has transpired thus far.”


On if he has a status update on Steelers CB Joe Haden and if Haden will have a chance to return from the reserve/COVID-19 list for this Sunday’s game:

“I do not as a sit here today. We are just going to follow the guidelines prescribed in the COIVD protocol. When they say he is available, he is available.”


On G Joel Bitonio not being available to the Browns on Sunday and if the Steelers can take advantage of Bitonio’s absence:

“I had not pondered that as of yet to be honest with you. I have just been looking at their collective personality and the things that they try to do. In this COVID environment, we all have to deal with that from time to time. We lost (Steelers C) Maurkice Pouncey for a couple of games. It is just things you deal with. I am sure they are going to deal with it. I had not pondered a lot about it in terms of his availability or ability and what that does for them. We just better get prepared for them to be at their best.”


On how well the Steelers handled DE Myles Garrett last week, given Garrett had zero sacks:

“We did not win the game. We are not looking for moral victories and dicing it up in that way. They did the job, they provided enough pressure, we turned the ball over and we did not win the game


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