Tennessee WR Jalin Hyatt Struck By How ‘Genuine A Person’ Steelers’ Mike Tomlin Is In Combine Meeting

Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin sure is making an impression on a number of young prospects at the 2023 NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis.

On Thursday, Oregon cornerback Christian Gonzalez raved about Tomlin, stating to CBS Sports’ Aditi Kinkhabwala how “cool” Tomlin was. Friday, that continued with Tennessee star wide receiver Jalin Hyatt.

Speaking with reporters Friday, Hyatt confirmed he met with Tomlin and the Steelers, and said what really stood out in his meeting with Tomlin was how genuine a person he is outside of the game of football.

“I was talking to Mike Tomlin, obviously a great coach. Talking to the whole coaching staff. Met with them, very good people, just talking with them, talking ball and talking to Mike Tomlin. I think what really stood out to me is that he is actually a genuine person outside of football,” Hyatt said of Tomlin. “[I] really had a good interaction with them as well. I’m proud of what the Steelers have done with my time and their whole coaching staff, and we’ll see in the future.”

Tomlin unfairly gets a bad rap from some in the fanbase and in the media for being a “player’s coach” but what he is is very relatable to players. He knows there are more important things in life than football and certainly does his due diligence when it comes to trying to develop off-field relationships with his players, creating a rather welcoming work environment.

That’s largely what happened with Hyatt during his meeting with the Steelers at the Combine, and that should come as no surprise. While it is a hectic week overall and the team only gets 15 minutes with a prospect, Tomlin is always trying to make a connection with guys, even if they aren’t draft targets that season. That establishing of a relationship carries over throughout the player’s career and can often lead to the player and the franchise getting together down the line, in large part due to that initial interest from the pre-draft process and their ability to connect and hit it off.

When it comes to Hyatt, we’ll see if there is any genuine interest there from the Steelers. He can certainly fill the slot role, but he seems to be mostly a one-trick pony at this point in his career, though that one trick is pretty special, that being a deep-ball artist with serious home run speed.

Here’s what Steelers Depot’s own Tom Mead had to say about Hyatt in his draft profile:

“Overall, Hyatt has very good speed, solid route running and good hands. He can create in space and can stack defensive backs on deeper routes. His routes tree was limited but should be able to handle all routes. When route running, his change of direction and hip drop are good and he has soft hands catching away from his body.

“Areas to improve include sharpening his breaks on routes, adding play strength to combat physical defenders and work on improving breaking tackles to add yards after the catch.”

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