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Panthers Vs. Steelers: Mike Tomlin Reacts

Mike Tomlin was pleased with his team's 17-16 victory over Carolina in their preseason finale, but Tomlin knows as well as anybody that the real stories surrounding his team were off the field, from injuries to impending roster cuts.

In his press conference following the game, Tomlin touched on the imminent moves almost immediately:

It's much appreciated, not only what they did tonight in terms of winning the game, but efforts throughout. I respect that group of men that's in that locker room. Obviously, we've got some decisions to make and we will make them, that's part this game of professional football.

Many of Tomlins' comments surrounded two running backs: Jonathan Dwyer, who had a team-high 13 carries, and Chris Rainey, who didn't get the ball in the backfield much but turned heads by taking two punt returns into the end zone, although both were called back.

On Dwyer:

He toted the load tonight... it's what we wanted to see. It's really a snapshot of his growth and development throughout this training camp and preseason.

On Rainey:

He did some nice things in terms of making some unblocked guys miss. Any reputable punt returner is capable of making that first one, two potential guys miss, and he showed that tonight.

For more on the Steelers, head over to Behind the Steel Curtain and continue to check out SB Nation Pittsburgh.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.