Tomlin says he’s out of school

PITTSBURGH — Note to big-time college football programs looking for new coaches: Mike Tomlin isn’t interested.

The Pittsburgh Steelers coach said Tuesday he considers it a “joke” that his name has popped up as a potential candidate for places such as Southern California.

“I got one of the best jobs and in all the professional sports, why would I have any interest in coaching college football?” Tomlin said.

Former Heisman Trophy winner and USC star Carson Palmer told The Dan Patrick radio show that Tomlin was a “wild card” as the Trojans look for someone to replace Clay Helton, who was fired in September.

Former Buffalo Bills general manager Doug Whaley, who worked in the Steelers front office alongside Tomlin for several years before moving on to the Bills, said on 93.7 The Fan in Pittsburgh last week that Steeler fans should be worried about the letters “U-S-C” and “L-S-U.”

Tomlin is 148-81-1 in 15 seasons with the Steelers, one shy of the number his predecessor — Hall of Famer Bill Cowher — reached in the same number of seasons with the club. The Steelers signed Tomlin to a three-year contract extension in April that runs through 2024.

The 49-year-old, who played collegiately at William & Mary before going into coaching, has no connection to USC or LSU. He’s spent the overwhelming majority of his coaching career in the NFL. Tomlin last coached at the college level while serving as the defensive backs coach at the University of Cincinnati in 1999 and 2000. He joined the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as a defensive backs coach in 2001 and has been in the NFL since then.

Tomlin, whose team is 3-3 heading into a visit to AFC North rival Cleveland (4-3) on Sunday, said this would be the last time he addresses his name in connection — however loosely — with college jobs.

“Never say never, but never,” he said. ” Anybody else got any questions about any college jobs? There is not a booster with a big enough blank check.”

Wolfe will return

OWINGS MILLS, Md. (AP) — The Baltimore Ravens have designated defensive end Derek Wolfe for return, allowing him to resume practicing.

The Ravens announced the move Tuesday. The 2008 Beaver Local High School graduate has been on injured reserve since Oct. 2 because of back problems.

Wolfe was a regular starter for eight seasons with the Denver Broncos, then started eight of the 14 games he appeared in last season for the Ravens. He hasn’t played yet this season.

The Ravens are off this weekend after a 41-17 loss to Cincinnati on Sunday dropped them into a tie for first place in the AFC North with the Bengals.

Peppers out with ACL

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) — The New York Giants have placed safety Jabrill Peppers on injured reserve with a rupture to the ACL and a high ankle sprain, both on his right leg.

Peppers was hurt in the third quarter on a punt return in the Giants’ 25-3 victory over the Carolina Panthers. He is the third of the Giants’ team captains to suffer a season-ending injury, joining center-guard Nick Gates (broken leg) and linebacker Blake Martinez (ACL).

The Giants also waived cornerback Josh Jackson and wide receiver David Sills on Tuesday. Defensive back J.R. Reed terminated his practice squad contract with the Los Angeles Rams and will join the Giants’ active roster Wednesday. Defensive tackle Woodrow Hamilton’s contract was terminated from the practice squad.

Peppers is a five-year veteran who is in his third season with the Giants. He had 30 tackles (19 solo), including a 3-yard sack of Sam Darnold on Sunday, two tackles for loss, four quarterback hits and one pass defensed.

A 2017 first-round draft choice by the Cleveland Browns, Peppers was acquired in a trade, along with first and third-round draft choices, for Odell Beckham, Jr. on March 13, 2019. He has started 30 of the 32 games in which he’s played for the Giants.

Reed played in one game for the Rams this season and seven games as well as two postseason games last year.

Reed’s father, Jake, played in the NFL for 12 seasons with the Minnesota Vikings and New Orleans Saints.


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