Mike Tomlin is playing it conservatively and it’s probably going to cost the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday night.
The Browns got out to a huge early lead over the Steelers, leading 35-10 at halftime. However, Pittsburgh got back into it, scoring 13 unanswered points to start the second half.
Pittsburgh then had the ball close to midfield on a 4th and 1 attempt. Tomlin opted to punt the ball back to Cleveland.
This was a mistake.
—> CLE (35) @ PIT (23) <—
PIT has 4th & 1 at the PIT 46
Recommendation (VERY STRONG): 👉 Go for it (+7.1 WP)
Actual play: 🚨 (Punt formation) PENALTY on PIT, Delay of Game, 5 yards, enforced at PIT 46 – No pic.twitter.com/nSoFurKutk
— 4th down decision bot (@ben_bot_baldwin) January 11, 2021
The Browns took the gift from Tomlin and marched down the field for a touchdown. It’s now Cleveland 42, Pittsburgh 23 with about 12 minutes to play in the fourth quarter.
Fans are not happy with how conservatively Tomlin is playing things.
“Had a full 3 minutes to think about it and punted away the game. Worst decision of Tomlin’s career,” Mike DeCourcy of the Sporting News tweeted.
Had a full 3 minutes to think about it and punted away the game. Worst decision of Tomlin’s career.
— Michael DeCourcy (@tsnmike) January 11, 2021
“Tomlin is down 12 points at home in the 4th quarter of a playoff game… he has a 4th & 1 at his 46 he must score twice AND not allow another score and he punts… and it’s a touchback… COMPLETELY EMBARASSING,” Warren Sharp added.
Tomlin is down 12 points at home in the 4th quarter of a playoff game…
he has a 4th & 1 at his 46
he must score twice AND not allow another score
and he punts…
and it's a touchback…
— Warren Sharp (@SharpFootball) January 11, 2021
Good luck winning playoff games with decisions like this, Steelers:
4th & 1, Steelers punt
2+ minutes later, Browns score pic.twitter.com/3Z3H0KIIG2
— CBS Sports (@CBSSports) January 11, 2021
The fourth quarter of the Steelers vs. Browns game can be seen on NBC.