Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Tomlin Tells Players to Be 'Professional'

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Tomlin Tells Players to Be 'Professional'

Article excerpt

Coach Mike Tomlin said he would prefer his players to stay away from the "childishness" of social media and act like professionals, something that hasn't been the case since a Steelers victory Sunday in Cincinnati.

Tomlin was asked Tuesday about comments on Twitter made by right tackle Marcus Gilbert that appeared to be in response to tweets by Adam Jones and other Bengals players.

Bengals tackle Andrew Whitworth blamed a tweet by Steelers linebacker Vince Williams, who said he was going to "paint" linebacker Vontaze Burfict when he saw him on South Beach after the first meeting, for inciting what happened before the game at Paul Brown Stadium.

"I'm just going to ask our guys to be professional, to be the professionals that they are, to understand that our play is what speaks volumes and to stay away from some of that childishness," Tomlin said at his weekly news conference. "I'm not going to get caught up in it. I'm not going to make more of a deal out of it than what it is.

"I think it's a shame that silliness like that becomes a story line, as opposed to two teams fighting hard and competing in December football, which was really the significant story line in Sunday's performance."

BROWN KNOCKS BENGALS, TOO

Wide receiver Antonio Brown said a lot of the Bengals players were determined to play with a nastiness against the Steelers, including cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick.

Brown and Kirkpatrick were assessed offsetting personal fouls after an incomplete pass in the first quarter. Brown said he got up to pat Kirkpatrick on the helmet for a good play, but Kirkpatrick responded by smacking him in the facemask. Brown responded by hitting Kirkpatrick, drawing the penalties.

"I'm not going to let someone push me around," Brown said Tuesday night on his weekly radio show.

Brown had strong words about Burfict, who seemed to be in the middle of nearly every altercation.

"He really played dirty," Brown said. "That's the type of player he is. A guy like that, you got to protect yourself at all times."

POUNCEY UPDATE

Tomlin said for the first time he has not counted out the possibility of All-Pro center Maurkice Pouncey returning before the end of the regular season. …

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