Thursday, December 22, 2022

Steelers WR George Pickens blasted for reacting to ‘Classless’ hit

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George Pickens continues to add fuel to the fire of renewed rivalry between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Cincinnati Bengals.

It all started with just 44 seconds remaining in the Week 11 matchup in Pittsburgh on November 20th. Pickens came down hard on Bengals receiver Tyler Boyd with an outrageous late hit while recovering from an onside kick. A flag was thrown for unnecessary rudeness and Pickens was disqualified.

Until the sack, Pickens was enjoying his second-best game of the season with 83 yards and a touchdown on four receptions.

The NFL did not view the game as one that warranted further discipline. When fines were announced on November 26, George Pickens’ name was not on them.

Not surprisingly, the leading question asked of George Pickens during his first media appearance on November 25 was what happened.

“I was really more focused on the game,” Pickens said. “I had a great game, so I don’t really pay attention to it or play around with it.”

“It’s really nothing. It didn’t cost us a game or anything,” Pickens continued. “I could see if it was a dangerous position in the game or if it hurt the lead or ruined the game or was the reason we lost. no So it was really nothing to say.”

Pickens’ smug reply shook some feathers.

Steelers fan Kate Magdziuk tweeted: “I would like to see more personal responsibility there. It showed a lack of discipline and a lack of concern for player safety. Unnecessary and just because it didn’t change the game doesn’t mean it wasn’t problematic for the team on several levels.”

“If you all thought the guy who wore a shabby mask on draft day and fought someone in college during a game would suddenly flip a switch and be Larry Fitz, I don’t know what to tell you guys lol” Steelers fan Bruce Becker tweeted.

Bengals fans obviously had to do their two cents.

“Classless hit when the game is completely over and dropped a touchdown. Had a great game for sure.” Five Moe replied.

“What a despicable answer. Basically it was the end of the game so he can be a dirty player. Typical dirty Steeler.” Bengals & Baskets replied.

Jarrett Bailey, NFL contributor for USA Today and SINow, took a different approach. “Bengals fans: I don’t recall you asking Vontaze Burfict to apologize to Antonio Brown.” he tweeted. “Calm down on George Pickens. Nobody was seriously injured. Relax.”

Of course, Bailey is referring to Burfict’s shot in the head of Antonio Browns in a 2016 wild card game. It’s still credited to this day as the hit that made Antonio Brown who he is today.

Yes, George Pickens is right. His late goal had no effect on the game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Cincinnati Bengals.

Pickens told Steelers media that Mike Tomlin has not spoken to him about his actions. But if Tomlin doesn’t address unnecessary penalties like this one with Pickens now, the incident can quickly snowball.

The Georgia product, which led the team as a freshman in yards and touchdowns, earned something of a reputation as a threat on the football field.

Pickens was ousted from office in November 2019 after punches are thrown during a tilt against Georgia Tech. The brawl eventually resulted in his being suspended for the first half of the SEC championship game.

On the other hand, Tomlin has earned a reputation for not being hard enough on his players. Throughout his career, the Steelers have been accused of a lack of discipline.

Najee Harris commented on this in a media crum on October 30th.

“We’re missing a lot” Harris told Steelers media. “We lack a lot of experience, we lack a lot of discipline, responsibility. We’re missing a lot. We cannot move on without correcting the little things that affect us. We talk about that every week.”

As head coach and leader of the Pittsburgh Steelers, Tomlin Pickens must make it known that unnecessary incidents that result in penalties will not be tolerated.

Of course, Bailey is referring to Burfict’s shot in the head of Antonio Browns in a 2016 wild card game. It’s still credited to this day as the hit that made Antonio Brown who he is today.



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