Big Lead Sports Bar

12/12/2007

Tomlin's Intensity and Thursday Links

--I've had many an email about the Steelers and a perceived lack of motivation on Sunday. So let me address it. We've been weaned on a spitting, screaming, borderline-maniac roaming the sidelines for the past 15 seasons, and since he's now employed by CBS, we have to deal with the fact that Mike Tomlin is not Bill Cowher.
When taking the entire season into consideration, it's hard for anyone to be critical of Tomlin. He's 9-4 in his rookie campaign and has his team sitting in first place in the AFC North. Sure, the Steelers should have won a few more, they could have adjusted better for the second half on Sunday, and they could've been a little classier in defeat. But given the injuries and the fact that this was a big transition, I'll take 9-4 any day. Remember, it's not a given that coaching changes will work out as nicely as Tomlin has. Ask Atlanta or Miami what they think of their head men. Or should I say head man.
Tomlin clearly has his own style, and Steeler fans have to eventually come to grips with the fact that he can be successful without simultaneously behaving like a raving lunatic when things go awry. Steeler fans seem to have a sense of history/entitlement at certain positions within the organization. For instance, as I've pointed out about 100 times and contrary to popular belief, the Steelers are not entitled to have a bruising, 250-pound Hall of Fame running back on their roster each season. They are not entitled to have a sensible team of front-office decision makers and an owner that doesn't make himself the sideshow. And they are not entitled to have the best defense in the NFL (except when they play the Patriots). Of course, we live in a town where we're also spoiled by having the best player in the NHL for the last 20-odd years, so I can see where we fall into that trap.
Looking at the situation as a whole, we're lucky to have what looks like a good coach, a young, superstar-in-the-making running back, a tough defense, great decision makers, and a legendary owner. We're not going to win with Bill Cowher or Jerome Bettis again. We have men like Mike Tomlin and Willie Parker at those positions, and I'll take my shots with them anytime.
You can criticize the Steelers for a lot of things they did or didn't do on Sunday, but don't pin the loss on Tomlin for not kicking and screaming. That wouldn't have stopped Randy Moss either.
For more on the players' relationship with Tomlin, I highly encourage you to read this article. And wonder what that souped-up ride that Tomlin rides around in looks like.
--Just when the Pens get a little momentum, MAF goes down for 6-8 weeks and Maxime Talbot for 2-4. Is it the Curse of Mark Recchi?
--Who wins a fast-talker face-off: Nick Saban or Bobby Petrino? Don't forget about darkhorse participant Les Miles!
--Doubt About It's "I Want To Fight Tom Brady" post continues to stir the pot.
--Here's Coach Tomlin on Belicheat:
Q: After the game, Bill Belichick had some less-than-complimentary things to say about your safeties. What’s your reaction to that?

Tomlin: I don’t care what Coach Belichick has to say after the games, regarding our performance. I compliment them for a great game and we move forward. His opinions are irrelevant to us, because we focus on what it is we do and how we prepare in moving forward.
--Here's a pretty amazing casting call for a live-action Simpsons movie
--Did you know: the Steelers have a 98% chance of making the playoffs
--Who's the mystery Chicago Bear that's involved with Lisa Lampanelli?
--It's the battle of the big-mouths drafted in 1996: Keyshawn Johnson vs. Terrell Owens.
--The Big Lead calls this 9-year-old "The Next Wayne Gretzky", but since this is Pittsburgh, let's call him The Next Mario Lemieux.
--The K-Fuk Era is finally here!
--Here's your one-stop shop for all the Jessica Simpson-Tony Romo gossip you can stomach.
A LIST OF TODAY'S TOP LISTS...
And courtesy of Time, here's the Top 50 "Top 10 Lists" of 2007

4 comments:

Louis Lipps is my homeboy said...

Thankyou for saying that Moondesi!!

People are ridiculous. I don't see Bellichick and Tony Dungy ranting and raving on the sidelines, and nobody accuses them of not being good coaches.

Break out some old NFL Films, you won't see Chuck Noll or Tom Landry yelling and screaming on the sidelines either.

Cowher had his style. It worked for him. It's not everyone's style, and Cowher's gone.

We got our asses kicked by one of the best teams in history. It is not our birthright to go undefeated every year, score a TD on every drive, force a three-and-out on every defenseive stand, and win a Super Bowl every year. It's sports and the other guys get paid to win too, and despite that we're still 9-4 this year.

Tomlin's fine. He's certainly not the problem here (if there even is one).

The Duke said...

The life action Simpsons cast is laugh out loud funny:

Moff Tarkin as Mr. Burns, need i say more?

vinnie said...

Rumors abound that Raul Mondesi is mentioned in the Mitchell Report. Obviously this was before his contract with the Pirates!

Jason said...

It's not just fans who get locked into the notion of the Steelers playing football "The Steeler Way". Regardless of how the Steelers play the game, announcers will talk about smash-mouth football and a power running game. During the Sunday night game against the Bengals, the Steelers were inside the five, and Madden said something along the lines of "Knowing the history of this franchise and the way they like to play football, this will be a running play." Ben promptly rolled out and threw a TD.
You get the feeling we could play nothing but a prevent defense and unveil an innovative hybrid of the run-and-shoot crossed with the triple-wing option, and the talking heads would say they like Pittsburgh's chances in the playoffs because when it gets cold, you need to play smash-mouth football and have a power running game.