Mike Tomlin Talks 2020 Season

Photo/Keith Srakocic

By: Jessica Costello
SteelerNation.com

 

During an interview with the team’s website, Pittsburgh Steelers‘ head coach, Mike Tomlin talked about the beginning of the 2020 season for the team.

Tomlin was asked about his opinions on how the league has pulled off the season considering the COVID-19 pandemic continues to delay and cancel events.

“It has been really impressive. It hasn’t necessarily been fluid, but it has been impressive. Their willingness to continue to work to make adjustment after adjustment to protocol has been the most impressive thing,” Tomlin said. We didn’t formulate a plan and then send that plan to press and be unwilling to adapt or adjust. We adapted and adjusted where necessary based on what transpired with us, based on the information gathered of the experiences of the other sports, and I just think that general attitude, that willingness to continue to adjust is what has us where we are right now.”

With today being the official start of the Steelers season, Tomlin mentioned earlier in the week that he wants to make sure he puts all of his players in the best position to win by using schemes they can perform well in a variety of circumstances.

 “It probably is in terms of my attitude of doing what the guys are capable of doing and executing, but given the amount of time that we have worked relative to the amount of time we would have worked leading up to the first preseason game, the expectations are different. I do want to bring the game to our players and allow them to win the game and play fast and free and all of those things, but I believe it’s a reasonable expectation for them to have a decent volume of game readiness in terms of the schematics. It is similar in spirit, but I’ll expect them to be able to handle much more football tonight than I would expect them to handle for a preseason opener,” Tomlin said.

Tomlin also commented on how Zach Banner ended up winning the job at right tackle.

“Zach and Chuks (Okorafor) both performed above the line of expectation. I just think he performed better more consistently. He brought it on a more consistent basis, on a daily basis, and I think that’s reflective of what he’s capable of doing over the course of the journey. Both guys are starter-capable, but the ridiculous consistency not only of his approach but also his performance won out in the long run,” Tomlin said.

And of course, with the signing of  Cam Heyward’s contract, it will officially allow him to retire as a Pittsburgh Steeler. Tomlin says he’s a quality leader to the team.

“He’s just really a walking example of how we like to do business. That’s a young man who Kevin (Colbert) and myself identified at Ohio State. Prior to his draft we went into town and got to know him and took him to dinner and participated in all the pre-draft things. We drafted him even though he wasn’t necessarily a finished product. We put him around some quality leadership like Aaron Smith and Brett Keisel, and he grew and developed. As those guys’ careers wound down, Cam’s revved up, and it continues to improve and he continues to play at an extremely high level. In turn, he’s training the next generation. It’s a really a proud moment when we’re able to do business like that, to watch a guy like Cam Heyward, who’s homegrown and developed and produced and will have an opportunity to go into his third contract here – all of it is really reflective of how we like to do business and the growth and development formula we have for our players and the players’ roles in it. Not only as a mentee, but now as he gets into his third contract as a mentor paying it forward is cool and fun to watch,” Tomlin said.

 

What do yinz think the 2020 NFL season has in store for our boys in black and gold? Comment below!

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