Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin is being reviewed by the NFL for his interference with a kick return from Baltimore Ravens kick returner Jacoby Jones on Thanksgiving Day. Tomlin claims that he was watching the kick return on the jumbotron when he lost his place on the sidelines, which resulted in forcing Jones to break his stride and ultimately get caught from behind.
On Monday, there was some footage that surfaced from Pittsburgh station KDKA that showed Tomlin taking a step onto the field, but a look at the All-22 coaches film seems to support Tomlin’s story.
Before the kick, Tomlin is already facing away from the play and looking towards the scoreboard and he never turned back to look at the play.
While Jones is making his way down the field, Tomlin is still oblivious to the play as Jones approaches.
As Jones got closer, Tomlin could see the action getting close to him and he looks over his shoulder before jumping out of the way.
Jones was upset with the call and immediately pointed to Tomlin, which is when it was brought to all of our attention that he had interfered.
If Tomlin was to intentionally interfere with the play, he likely would have made his way to that spot much later than usual. Instead, he was already in position and had little time to reaction. No one other than Tomlin will know for sure whether or not Tomlin’s interference was intentional, but the footage certainly seems to back up Tomlin’s account of the story.
Here is a quick look from the endzone cam:
Unfortunately for Tomlin, he still interfered with the play and will be facing punishment. It will likely be a hefty fine.
Do you believe Tomlin’s story and what do you think would be appropriate punishment? Sound off in the comments section with your thoughts.