Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
The Pittsburgh Steelers have had quite a few ups and downs this season, and have suffered through quite a bit in 2013. The latest point of turmoil for the Steelers is Mike Tomlin’s interference of the Ravens’ Jacoby Jones as he streaked towards the end zone during a kick return on Thanksgiving. The interference landed Tomlin in hot water to the tune of $100k. Worse still, it has left the media and Steeler Nation all a fire with questions of Tomlin’s intent, integrity, and also the future of the team.
While we all hoped that once the fine came through that this thing would go away and leave this incident in the review mirror. Instead, the NFL has decided to hold a draft pick over the heads of the Steelers – like a bully holding some kid’s lunch money over their heads while they helplessly jump for it. The condition of the draft pick penalty is vague in its finest of details, but essentially if the Ravens fail to get into the playoffs due to losing the point spread tiebreaker, then the Steelers will lose a draft pick. There’s even talk that the NFL won’t officially make a final decision on the draft pick until well after the playoffs. Seems like they might be waiting for the draft order if that’s the case. Justified, or not… more than likely not… this whole week has the potential to be a huge distraction as the Steelers finalize their preparation for this weekend’s contest against the Dolphins at Heinz Field.
With the mound of injuries, the return of former Steeler wide receiver and jagoff Mike Wallace, and now Interfere-gate there’s plenty on the minds of the Steelers and Steeler Nation. The question is will the Steelers be able to overcome the challenges and distractions of the week to step up and hold off an equally up and down Dolphins squad? Tomlin has been under the gun (more so this season than season’s past) about failing to get his team prepared week in and week out – and that’s when things are going well.
Hopefully the Steelers have stayed focused on the upcoming Sunday and have ignored (as best they can) anything that doesn’t have to do with the Dolphins.
What’s your take – will the Steelers be ready for the Dolphins?