2010 Playoffs

Mike Tomlin Super Bowl XLV Media Day Interview Transcript


(on the composition of the Steelers’ roster) “We believe in building through the draft. I don’t think that’s a big secret. Equally as important as that is we believe in paying our own players — those who are deserving — and simply adding to and supplementing that. That’s our business model. It’s worked for a long time prior to me getting here. I think it creates an atmosphere where guys care about one another. They care about the organization. They understand that it is bigger than them.”

(on how his experience in Minnesota helped him) “It was an awesome experience. First and foremost, coach Childress gave me an opportunity to be a coordinator. Equally as important as that was those guys bought in up there. They did what I asked them to do. We didn’t have as much success as one would like, but there is great respect for what we were able to start up there, and a personality that still shows through how they play defensively.”

(on the Steelers’ culture when he became coach) “It’s not broken, so I wasn’t going to try to fix it. It’s sound, it’s time-tested and it’s proven. I didn’t have any deep or philosophical thoughts regarding it. I was more interested in what I needed to do to add to that legacy.”

(on whether he looks at his first Super Bowl ring he won as a head coach) “I don’t look at it too often. I’m always concerned about my next one. I have three kids and two rings, so I need another one.”

(on his veteran players) “These guys are pros. They care about one another. They have a strong desire to win. It’s been really good.”

(on Cowboys Stadium) “This is unbelievable. This is a special place, and what a great place to be involved with a Super Bowl. This is Super Bowl-worthy, no doubt.”

(on winning on the road) “This journey is not an easy one, and probably not an easy one for the Green Bay Packers as well. I take my hat off to both teams, and both teams have done enough to get here. I have such a great level of respect for being able to navigate that journey. There are a lot of good teams who work extremely hard, have extremely knowledgeable and competent coaches and hard-working players. It’s humbling, and it’s an honor to be sitting here today.”

(on who he leans on when things are tough) “These are lonely jobs (laughs). I lean on myself and my wife, and she tolerates me. Such is life in these jobs. I embrace what comes with being a head coach, and a lot of times that means making solo decisions and not finding comfort in certain places, and that’s OK. My job is to lead these men, provide direction and a compass for them, and I take pride in doing it.”

(on if the Steelers’ tradition is a motivator) “It certainly is, because it keeps perspective on what they are currently doing. A lot of times when you are a young guy and you experience success, you can wear your hand out patting yourself on the back. We’re fortunate enough to be a part of an organization where just about anything we do is has been done before and is probably going to be done again.”

(on playing on the road) “We love being in hostile environments. Our group thrives on that. It’s easy to win at home. It takes a really good team to win in an hostile environment on the road. I think our team embraces that.”

(on if the Packers are like any other team the Steelers played this year). “No. They have their own personality from a schematic and a talent standpoint.”

(on if it is a hostile environment when the Steelers’ fans travel so well) “It’s always hostile when we start. At the end of the game, it’s easier to see the Steelers fans.”

(on how having Ben Roethlisberger on the roster helps the Steelers) “It’s big. A great deal of why these two teams are here are because of the men who play that position. There is no doubt that this is a quarterback league. We are fortunate enough to have somebody who I think is an elite one, so it makes it much easier.”

(on if the NFL is more of a quarterback league recently) “Absolutely, because of how the game is officiated and ruled differently than it was 10 years ago when I came into the league.”

(on the first four games of the season without Ben Roethlisberger) “A lot has been said about us going 3-1 without Ben. To me, that’s played out. We have a really good football team. A couple of years ago, I watched the New England Patriots go 11-5 without Tom Brady. That’s what good teams do — they win in spite of.”

(on how preparing for a Super Bowl is different from other games) “Hopefully, it’s not. That’s what I am striving for. At least the moments where we are together, players and coaches putting together our plan, practicing and perfecting our plan, is very similar to every other football game. That’s what we aspire for it to be.”

(on Cowboys Stadium) “It is breathtaking. Awesome. Kudos to Mr. (Jerry) Jones.”

(on if he reads about Pittsburgh’s successful history) “I love it. A study of history is a window into the future, particularly when you are talking about football and this organization I happen to be a part of. You can learn so many lessons, formally and informally, from the experiences of those who have come before us, particularly the 1970s Steelers. One of the things I enjoy most about my job is that many of those guys live in town and I count them as friends. We get together informally, and they educate me about their experiences. It always provides a little insight into what applies in situations and circumstances that we face.”

(on what he is doing differently on his second Super Bowl trip as head coach) “I don’t know if I am doing anything drastically different. Hopefully, I’m doing it better and more efficiently. I try to focus my efforts on things that are geared toward winning, and minimize my attention to things that don’t. The more you are in this setting, the better you are capable of doing that. Hopefully, I am working more efficiently, and hopefully it shows up in the stadium on Sunday.”

(on being at the Super Bowl for the second time as a head coach) “We are blessed to be here. We have a really good team, a bunch of guys who care about one another and don’t care who gets the credit, and I think more than anything, that’s why we’re here again.”

(on what he is saying to his team this week) “I am just reiterating the points we talked about all year, the things that are important to us. We have got to exercise common sense; we have to compete when given an opportunity and be considerate of others. If we do those things, we feel like we can put together a winning performance.”

(on if there is anything he didn’t do in the first Super Bowl trip that he will do this time) “I’m trying to enjoy it more. Last time, I tried to micro-manage these moments leading up to the game. I’m letting my hair down some.”

(on Flozell Adams) “The most impressive thing about him, and the biggest impact he’s had is that his intentions are so pure. This guy has made a lot of money in the NFL and has garnered a lot of personal accolades. He’s been very clear since day one was that his intention was to be part of a winner. His actions have backed that up. More than his words, that’s been an awesome example for our football team.”

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