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Tomlin Takes

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'Tomlin's Takes' on duly prepared, trends & more

Significant games: The Steelers hit the road on Sunday for a key AFC North matchup against the Cleveland Browns. The Browns head into the game with a 4-3 record, the Steelers 3-3 coming off their bye.

When the two teams meet, it's always intense, and Coach Mike Tomlin is expecting nothing less on Sunday.

"The atmosphere is something that has our attention," said Tomlin. "We realize we're going into an AFC North road game. We expect it to be hostile, Halloween and so forth. But I think as competitors that fires us up.

"But forget being fired up; we've got to be duly prepared. We're preparing with an edge, understanding all the things that I mentioned, and understanding the significance of this game that's waiting on us at the end of the week. But boy, isn't that what we signed up for? Significant games, big-time competition, divisional play. It's a great way to come off a bye week."

What's trending: Speaking of the bye week, one of the things Tomlin likes about it is the opportunity for the coaches to take a look at things overall, including trends in the game that are standing out.

"From the coach element of it, it's an opportunity for us to self-evaluate and do some self-scouting, some analytical studies relative to what it is that we do," said Tomlin of how the bye is spent. "But equally important or more importantly than that, we get an opportunity to look at some trends in the game, some things that are going around in the game of football. Offensively defensively, and special teams. I could talk specifically about it. I spent a portion of my day last week looking at quarterback mobility and its impact in situational ball: possession downplay, red zone, etc., etc., as a trend, for example. Different components of man to man on possession downs on the other side in dime and so forth.

"It's good to take a step back and not have to get focused in on one particular opponent or on yourself, and you can take more of a global perspective and look at some broad sweeping discussions as it pertains to the game of football. Those are things that really help you coming out of a bye week."

Setting the record straight: Tomlin was asked at the end of the press conference about 'rumors' started by several individuals in the media that connected him to college coaching jobs, including LSU and USC.

Tomlin was emphatic in his reply.

"Hey, guys, I don't have time for that speculation," said Tomlin. "That's a joke to me. I've got one of the best jobs in all of professional sport. Why would I have any interest in coaching college football? That'll be the last time that I address it. And not only today but moving forward.

"Never say never, but never. Okay? Anybody else got any questions about any college jobs? There's not a booster with a big enough blank check. Anybody asking Sean Payton about that? Anybody asking Andy Reid about stuff like that?"

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