The Pittsburgh Steelers chances of overcoming a 24 point deficit Sunday in their loss to the San Diego Chargers were slim, but head coach Mike Tomlin didn’t help matters when he chose not to go for two point conversions after third and fourth quarter touchdowns, which if converted, would have made it a two possession game in both instances.
Tomlin was asked about the decision to not go for two twice after those scores during his post game press conference and his answer certainly did not make good sense.
“Until we stopped them it was going to be insignificant,” said Tomlin. “I was holding the two-point plays for that reason and that reason only. Now, we still have them in our hip pocket. Those specialty plays we didn’t want to put on tape unless we had an opportunity to close the gap. As you can see, we didn’t”
Following the 40 yard touchdown pass from quarterback Ben Roethlisberger to wide receiver Mike Wallace with 2:33 left in the third quarter Tomlin decided to kick the extra point instead of going for two. That decision meant that the Steelers were three scoring possessions behind at that point instead of possibly being down just two.
The Chargers did answer back with a touchdown of their own to build the lead back to 24 points, but the Steelers would answer back with another drive resulting in yet another Roethlisberger to Wallace touchdown with 6:07 left in the game. Following that score Tomlin once again had a chance to make it a two possession game, but chose not to.
Not wanting to put down a two point conversion play on tape is not a good enough excuse by Tomlin, especially considering that he chose to allow Roethlisberger to stay in the game. Either you are trying to win the game or you are not. Can’t offensive coordinator Todd Haley design a few more two point plays moving forward? Isn’t that what his job description is?
Tomlin said after the game that they coached poorly and played poorly on Sunday. Sadly those were the two statements that he made during his talk with the media that made the most sense. He should have just got up out of his chair after uttering those words.