Tomlin Takes

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'Tomlin's Takes' hit on Bell, Harrison & Brown

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Bell's injury:** Running back Le'Veon Bell missed the majority of Sunday's AFC Championship Game after irritating a groin injury that he had been dealing with. The injury was one that Coach Mike Tomlin said they were well aware of, but it was unfortunate that it became problematic in what was the biggest game of the season for the team.

"He was doing a great job of managing it," said Tomlin. "It didn't cause him to miss any practice time, let alone game time. It was something to manage. When you look at the journey that is the season, I think just about every guy down there is dealing with and managing something in an effort to stay on the grass.

"I was aware of it. It wasn't significant to the point where it affected planning or the anticipation of planning in any way. It's unfortunate that it became an issue in game."

  • Harrison's future: Following Sunday's loss to the New England Patriots, William Gay said, "I'm not done." Harrison, who is 38, is an unrestricted free agent and Tomlin was asked if he would like to have the linebacker back next season.

"I am open to that," said Tomlin. "I think we are all not surprised by what he was able to do because he is James. We were pleased with what he was able to do. We are open to that discussion for sure."

  • Continuing to challenge: Antonio Brown has drawn a lot of headlines over the past few weeks, and not for all of the right reasons. Last week it was him sharing Tomlin's locker room speech on Facebook Live. This week there have been comments that he was 'moping' after Le'Veon Bell' touchdown because he was open. Tomlin said he wasn't aware of him moping, but he will meet with Brown, like he does with all players, to talk about areas where improvement is needed heading into next year.

"We all need to get better in all areas," said Tomlin. "I am going to continue to challenge him in the way I have challenged him over the course of his career to continue to find new ways to be an impact player for us. To continue to grow within the role that is his role on this team. He is a dynamic player. The responsibilities that come with being a dynamic player, I am going to ask him to continue to grow in those areas.

"That is not in response to anything that transpired over the course of the season or at the end of the season. That is normal operating business for all returning players. I think it's important they have great clarity about not only what their roles are formally, but what the informal responsibilities are associated with those ever growing and ever changing roles. Our conversations will be no different in regards to those things."

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