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Pittsburgh Steelers sack Terry Bradshaw's critique of Mike Tomlin

By The Sports Xchange 

Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin calls for a time-out late in the fourth quarter of the Steelers 31-27 win over the Baltimore Ravens. Photo by Archie Carpenter/UPI
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Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin reacts from the sidelines in the fourth quarter of the Cowboys 35-30 win against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh on November 13,2016. Photo by Archie Carpenter/UPI
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Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin listens to another coach on the sidelines during the fourth quarter of the Steelers 24-14 win over the New York Giants at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh on December 4, 2016. Photo by Archie Carpenter/UPI
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The Pittsburgh Steelers are rallying behind their head coach after Hall of Fame quarterback Terry Bradshaw criticized Mike Tomlin, describing him as a "great cheerleader guy" but not a great coach.
Bradshaw, who quarterbacked the Steelers from 1970 to 1983 and guided the team to four Super Bowl titles in six seasons, appeared as a guest last Friday on Fox Sports 1's "Speak For Yourself."
"I don't think he's a great coach at all," Bradshaw said of Tomlin. "He's a nice coach. To me, I've said this, he's really a great cheerleader guy. I don't know what he does. I don't think he is a great coach at all. His name never even pops in my mind when we think about great coaches in the NFL."
Tomlin, who has 102 wins in 10 seasons, won his fifth AFC North title after the Steelers rallied for a 31-27 victory over the rival Baltimore Ravens on Christmas Day. The win sent Tomlin's team into the playoffs for the seventh time and moved the Steelers to 10-5 this season.
Ben Roethlisberger shook off a pair of third-quarter interceptions to finish with 279 yards passing and three touchdowns against the Ravens.
Big Ben was asked about Bradshaw's comments after the game.
"No offense to Terry," Roethlisberger said Sunday. "I think he is one of the greatest of all time. I consider him Steeler family. But this is the real family, the tight-knit family that we have in here in this locker room. And when people talk, it's dust in the wind, if you will.
"I laughed at it because, well, it was what it was. But we can't dwell on it. Some people may have taken it to heart and said, 'Hey we're going to play for him because of what was said.' I think I've been in this long enough and heard enough stuff that for me it wasn't as big of a deal."
Bradshaw's comments might just fire up the Steelers for a playoff run.
"We weren't happy about it," guard David DeCastro told ESPN of Bradshaw's comments. "Hopefully it will fire us up the rest of the way.
"I pulled up ESPN around 10 p.m. (Friday) and was like, 'What the hell is this?' I don't get what the motivation is. Is this to get your name out there more or something? What are you doing?"
Bradshaw said he considered Tomlin's predecessor, Bill Cowher, to be a great coach. In his 15 years as Steelers head coach, Cowher was 149-90-1 (.623) from 1992-2006, with 10 playoff appearances, two AFC championships and one Super Bowl title. He had three seasons under .500.
Bradhaw's coach, Chuck Noll, had 193 career wins from 1969-1991.
As a comparison, Tomlin has never had a losing record and his overall regular-season mark is 102-57 (.642) in 10 seasons with the Steelers, including winning Super Bowl XLIII on Feb. 1, 2009. He is one of eight head coaches in NFL history to win at least 100 games in the first 10 years on the job.
"I didn't see it, but I heard about it," running back Le'Veon Bell said after the game of Bradshaw's comments. "So for me it wasn't a rallying cry. My mindset was to go out here and get the win regardless. I didn't care what people were saying, but for him, for Coach T, obviously we want to win for that man. I love him to death. To me, he's a great coach. He puts us in the right situations. He's real savvy. He thinks a lot like me, and obviously I'm excited about the win."
Left guard Ramon Foster added in defense of Tomlin: "He can coach. Look, nobody's ever talked bad about Mr. Bradshaw. Nobody's ever mentioned him in a bad light. I don't know where that comes from. But we'll see. I would love to hear his comments now."
Linebacker Vince Williams wrote on Twitter after the Steelers clinched the No. 3 spot in the AFC playoffs: "Not bad for a cheerleader."

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