A sure way to silence a group of NFL coaches is to ask them to speak up if they've never set foot on a field, even during a play.
Ravens coach John Harbaugh has been Baltimore's head man since 2008, and while no research was done, it's a good bet he's been a foot or so onto the field while the ball was in play. So has his brother, Jim Harbaugh, and Saints coach Sean Payton and any one of the 42 coaches Cleveland has had in the last decade.
Harbaugh seemed to recognize that when he was asked about Steelers coach Mike Tomlin's now-infamous "two-step-and-avoid" shuffle out of the way of Ravens return man Jacoby Jones.
Tomlin has been crushed by Steelers fans for most of this season, and he's usually the last one fans credit with any success the team may have had.
Harbaugh joked about it, as millions of others have, wondering if Tomlin was credited with a tackle on the play. He also added the most reasonable reaction, saying "hey, that stuff happens. It happens."
The matter is under investigation with the league, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter, and it appears likely Tomlin will be fined for it.
That's a reasonable solution (along with some kind of disciplinary action on the official, who Tomlin comes within a foot or two of hitting on his slide-step to his left. How he fails to notice Tomlin is well past where he is supposed to be could explain several things in this game).
No sacrifice is necessary, no suspension is warranted. It's clearly a "Tomlin beating Steelers" kind of mistake.
Harbaugh seems to have the right take on the matter, and even injected some humor into it.
Had Tomlin actually hit Jones, then it's a different matter. He might even face a suspension, not to mention the backlash of SteelerNation for having directly assisted in putting seven points on the board for the Ravens.
More from Behind the Steel Curtain:
- Steelers drop close one to Ravens: All postgame news and updates following Baltimore's 22-20 win over Pittsburgh
- Hit on Bell broke part of his helmet
- William Gay fined for hit on Browns' QB Jason Campbell
- Report: League investigating Tomlin, and could issue fine for stepping on the field
- Lawrence Timmons, Ben Roethlisberger top PFF grades vs. Ravens
- Ben Roethlisberger ties Terry Bradshaw's career touchdown passes mark
- Jacoby Jones is decidedly not Usain Bolt