Not making excuses: Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger had some moments on Sunday against the Packers when it looked like he was spot on, and other times he missed a few throws, something that happens to every quarterback but is under the microscope even more when you are a 1-3 team.
Coach Mike Tomlin, who shared that Roethlisberger is dealing with a hip injury coming out of the Packers game, was asked about the inconsistency from his quarterback and how it can be addressed.
One of the hottest topics in the NFL is always the starting quarterback, and that has definitely been the case in Pittsburgh as of late.
"It's him some, it's us collectively some," said Tomlin. "We've just got to keep working. Sometimes it could be attributed to altering of plans late in the week because of player availability or guys not being available. We lost Chase Claypool in the middle of the week, or toward the latter part of the week, last week so we had to alter our plans in some instances.
"We're not looking to make excuses. We've had some big play opportunities. We hadn't cashed in on them, and we need to cash in on them. They're a big component of moving the ball and scoring, particularly when you're not working as efficiently as you'd like on possession downs, which we aren't. Chunk plays eliminate a lot of execution we say in the coaching world and so we're going to continue to work to get better from an efficiency standpoint. We're also going to continue to work to connect on a higher percentages of these chunk opportunities, because that aids us in terms of ringing up the scoreboard as well."
Tomlin said Roethlisberger is 'absolutely' the right quarterback for this offense, one that has changed this year with new personnel and a new offensive coordinator in Matt Canada.
"What he does and what he's done makes me really comfortable in saying that," said Tomlin.
Finding the solution: Anytime a player struggles, no matter what the position, the key in sorting it out is working closely with the position coach. In the case of Roethlisberger, it's him and quarterbacks coach Mike Sullivan who go over things with a fine-tooth comb to get to the bottom of any struggles.
"No question, that is a Coach Sullivan task, along with Ben," said Tomlin. "Positional coaches really focus on technical aspects of play. They analyze that continually, whether he's playing well, or he isn't. That's just a component of play. Skill development is big at any position, but doubly so at the quarterback position. Positional coaches, regardless of position, spend a great deal of their time working with and dealing with the aspects of technical play or skill development with guys that they work with.
"Coordinators and guys like myself take a more global approach and talk about schematics and big picture things and how those individuals fit into 11-man football."
Take a closer look at scenes from the Steelers' Week 4 game against the Green Bay Packers
Actions speak louder: It's been said time and time again, actions speak louder than words.
For Tomlin, that rings true.
While the team is struggling, he said it's not about the message, the words he delivers to the team. It's about how he approaches things, the attitude he brings, the energy he brings, that the players see and therefore respond to appropriately.
"We say appropriate things that would not surprise you or be interesting to you in any way," said Tomlin. "What is more important is what I do than what I say. The attitude, the energy that I bring to these workdays. The attitude, the energy that I bring to preparation. I want them to mirror that behavior in their preparation.
"I talk to the leaders, the experienced guys about that. It's less about what we say. It's more about what we do and our approach to our circumstances, particularly when you're dealing with young guys and we got some young guys. Forget what comes out of my mouth. They're studying how I move. They're studying the spirit in which I move. The attitude and energy that I bring to the opportunity. The can-do approach is extremely helpful when you face the adversity that this game presents."