Steelers coach Mike Tomlin says he’s sorry for stepping on the field in front of Ravens kickoff returner Jacoby Jones on Thursday night. But he’s getting testy about accusations that it was an intentional attempt to impede Jones, rather than a simple lapse in concentration.
Jay Glazer of FOX Sports read a text message from Tomlin on the air in which Tomlin suggested that it’s ridiculous even to think he was guilty of anything more than absentmindedly wandering onto the field.
“If anybody thinks I or anybody else would do this on purpose, they are crazy,” Tomlin told Glazer.
If that’s true, there are a lot of crazy people out there. Especially after a local news station released a camera angle of the play that hadn’t previously been seen, plenty of people think Tomlin did it on purpose.
In the end, however, it might not matter to the NFL whether it was intentional or accidental. Tomlin broke a rule, and the NFL is going to punish him for it. That punishment is expected to be announced soon.
Meanwhile, the NFL should also explain why Tomlin wasn’t penalized. Replays show two officials had a clear view of Tomlin standing on the field in Jones’s path, and neither of them threw a flag. Anyone who thinks the officials handled that play well really is crazy.