Tomlin calls Porter arrest 'disappointing', 'unfortunate'

By Bob Hille 11 January 2017
Tomlin calls Porter arrest 'disappointing', 'unfortunate'

Steelers coach Mike Tomlin opened his news conference Tuesday with a comment on assistant coach Joey Porter's arrest over the weekend outside a Pittsburgh bar and restaurant, calling the situation "disappointing" and "unfortunate".

Porter was charged with aggravated assault, simple assault, resisting arrest, public drunkenness and disorderly conduct after an altercation with a bouncer and then a physical confrontation with a police officer.

"To be involved in the National Football League is an honour and a privilege, not a right," Tomlin said. 

"We should respect it as such. Obviously it was breached in this circumstance and there are consequences to be suffered because of it."

Tomlin said the Steelers are giving the situation "the attention it deserves" but no timetable has been set for Porter, who was placed on indefinite leave "pending review of the incident".

The Steelers play the Chiefs on Sunday in Kansas City in the AFC Divisional Playoffs, a fact that wasn't lost on Tomlin.

"We're not overly concerned with it being a distraction to us," he added.

"It's our job to deal with distractions that come up from time to time. I see how it can be viewed as such, but inside this building it won’t be. It won't change what's expected from us, and it won't change our preparation."

Asked how Porter's coaching responsibilities will be filled as the team prepares for and plays the Chiefs game, Tomlin said, "We're not ready to say he won't be a part of it."

After addressing Porter, Tomlin went on to comment on the Steelers' injuries coming out of the wild-card win over the Miami Dolphins, most prominently quarterback Ben Roethlisberger's foot injury.

"Ben Roethlisberger aggravated his foot, but it doesn't appear to be an issue," Tomlin said. 

"We'll watch him closely as we push forward to the game but not anticipating that limiting him."

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