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Transcripts: Steelers Postgame Quotes Week 4

Head Coach Mike Tomlin

Opening Statement:A disappointing outcome. A really good game. Two teams battled there. They made a few more plays than we did. We take responsibility for that. It's painful tonight, but this game is not going to define us. Hopefully, it's a building block for us as we move forward. There are things to learn from it. I appreciate the effort from the men, just came up short and we all are responsible for that, starting with me. As far as injuries, Markus Wheaton had an ankle. Other than that, just normal bumps and bruises associated with playing. We will evaluate the game and injuries tomorrow. I will have more information for you as we move forward.

Will you explore the possibility of a new kicker?

We have to turn the stones over. We have to find ways to win games. Obviously, that's an element of it. It was an element of the outcome tonight.

Re: On not giving Le'Veon Bell the ball during the last play of the game:

When you lose, you're open to criticism. We lost, so I'm not going to try to justify anything that we did. Anything we did, I take responsibility for.

Did Baltimore do something special to take Antonio Brown out of the game?

When you have guys like that, they work to minimize them. Just like we work to minimize Steve Smith Sr. The defenses were fighting. That's just an element of competition.

Re: On Mike Vick:

I thought there were some good things. It needs to be a building block as we move forward, but obviously it wasn't enough tonight. That's our singular focus. We aren't looking for comfort, or being able to define performance. We are just trying to win football games. We didn't do that tonight.

Re: Going for it in overtime rather than try to kick it:

Not a lot of conversation. I made that decision.  

Is this one of the most frustrating losses that you have been a part of?

Probably the toughest of my career. We had our chances to win the game, I had plays that I could've made, but didn't, and it's disappointing.

Re: The last pass to Antonio:

That last pass to Antonio. That one is going to haunt me for a long time.

I know that you guys don't like to point fingers, but you missed two field goals and they were late in the game and do you think that could've affected the outcome of the game?

We're a team at the end of the day and I'm pretty sure that Scoobe wishes that he could get those two back, and I know that I had a throw that I wish that I could take back, and I'm pretty sure other guys have some plays that they wish they could take back. The game was played great and there were plenty of opportunities that we didn't cash in on and that was our responsibility as an offense. Put the ball in the end zone and not always settle for three. Hopefully well come in tomorrow and get right back on it.

You scored at the beginning of the game and then there was nothing, do you think that changed anything?

I think it was part of our execution. We got the ball, we just didn't put up any points. They played some solid defense and took care of their job and responsibilities, and we're all professionals at the end of the day.

Why was this so disappointing?

Because it's happening right now. I'm trying to fill in for Ben and it's a difficult task, and I was up for it. I was excited about it. I haven't felt this pain in a long time. For me it's trying to get better from now on.

What is your comfort level with this offense?

My level is getting there. I was very comfortable tonight. We missed opportunities. We all said that. We just need to get it done.

You said that you wanted to embrace it and play free. Did you do that?

Yeah, I embraced it and I had a good time. It all came down to one final play for me, and I didn't convert. Maybe there were times when I should've tried to find the ball and get Heath Miller in the game. We have a lot of work to do. We can find a way.

Re: Final quarter passing instead of running the ball:

I had a discussion and it was the best play to run at the time and as a professional, you have to try to find a way to make it work. We're all professionals out there, they watch film and they play instinctively just like we do. I wish that we could've converted on one.

 K Josh Scobee

General comment

I feel like I let the team down and it's not something that I ever want to remember doing. It's a bad feeling. It was a hard fought game on both sides. I wish I had been able to come through, but it just wasn't my night.

What happened? Did you play the wind too much there?

Yeah, a little bit. The first kick I had [in] that direction, I played the wind just inside the upright and it stayed there. Then, the last two, I played them down the middle and they both moved. So it's a tough end to kick in because of the more open area. It's just something that takes experience.

Kickers are supposed to have short-term memory. Did the first kick maybe affect the second one?

No. I was ready for the second one. The same thing happened. I started it down the middle and it drifted really far left.

Are you worried about your job at all?

I can't think about that stuff. I just have to let it play out.

Were you hoping for that last opportunity?

Oh yeah, absolutely. I wanted to redeem myself, but I didn't get it. I understand it. I just have to move on.

DE Cameron Hayward

* *

Is this as frustrating regular season loss as you've had?

Every game is frustrating when you lose.

The way this one went, though?

This is just as frustrating as the first game. We learn from it, but we are not here to point fingers. We accept blame. Offense, defense [and] special teams, we all have to get better. There were too many times where we had our foot on their throats, and we just didn't do it.

Was there much conversation about not going for the field goal late?

It's not on them. It's on us. We have to execute better [on] offense, defense and special teams. The coaches just call the plays. We have to execute them. For us to point the finger at the coach is a stupid idea. We have to take full responsibility for what we are doing out there

How do you think the team responded without Ben?

Good, but we didn't get the win. We want this to be a good situation when he comes back. So we've got to start next week with San Diego and move on. We're going to watch this tomorrow and study what we did wrong today.

RB Le'Veon Bell

* *

I know you don't want to point fingers, but two missed field goals were clearly an important factor in the outcome of this game.

We have to score touchdowns. We can't point fingers. Obviously, we could have made stops here, we could have scored touchdowns there. So it's not just the field goals. It's a total team effort – offense, defense and special teams.

How do you think your quarterback did tonight with very little preparation?

I think he played well. He definitely went out there and did everything he was asked to do. He didn't turn the ball over, he managed the game well and made played. He definitely did everything we asked him to do, we just came up short as a team.

Did you respond as a team they way you wanted to without Ben?

We lost. So obviously it's not the way we wanted to. We have to come out and win.

Do you think you should have gotten the ball in those short-yardage situations late in the game?

It's not my call. If I get the call, then I run it. If we had converted, it would not be a problem. I'm not the play caller, I'm just a player. I go out there and run plays.

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