The Pittsburgh Steelers are doing damage control to their playoff round preparations after the arrest of assistant coach Joe Porter. The Steelers are clearly lying to themselves, saying Porter’s arrest is no distraction after placing him on leave status.
According to Brian Batko of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, linebacker Tyler Matakevich denied knowledge of what happened to Porter. He added that since they do not have any knowledge of what really took place, it poses no distraction to them. But Matakevich was quick to add that they need to focus on their preparations against the Kansas City Chiefs.
“We don’t really know anything about it, so we can’t let that distract us,” Matakevich said. “Just got to stay focused on the task that we have at hand, you know what I mean? It’s winning each week.”
What happened to Porter?
Based on TMZ, an off-duty officer was nearby a Pittsburgh bar Sunday night after the Steelers won over the Dolphins. The officer saw Porter “standing over” the bar’s bouncer, who denied the former linebacker entry. Things got out of hand when Porter grabs the bouncer by the arms and lifting him off the ground.
According to the bouncer, Porter threatened to kill him the last time he visited the bar which caused the commotion. The officer tried to pacify the situation, but was also allegedly “attacked” by Porter. He told investigators that Porter grabbed him by the wrist while trying to plead his case.
The officer added Porter was so drunk that he smelled alcohol with bloodshot eyes as well. Police responded to the scene and handcuffed Porter all the way to the station. Charges filed against the 39-year old Porter includes aggravated assault, simple assault, resisting arrest, disorderly conduct, and public drunkenness.
How does this affect the Steelers?
The Steelers immediately placed Porter in leave status with no definite date for his return to the team. Aside from that, they also place defensive coordinator Keith Butler to replace Porter for the meantime. The Steelers management stated they are still gathering further information on the matter before issuing a statement.
Steelers coach Mike Tomlin insisted that Porte’s case is no near of a distraction to the team’s playoff preparations. In his weekly press conference, Tomlin added the team is dealing “professionally” Porter’s case. He stresses Porter must face the consequences of his actions.
“Being involved in the National Football League is an honor and a privilege, it is not a right. We should respect it as such,” Tomlin said. “Obviously that got breached in that circumstance and there are consequences because of it.”
ALSO READ: Colin Kaepernick’s actions not divisive
Tomlin stresses the Steelers will continue their preparations for their divisional match against the Chiefs this Sunday. Though they hit a bump along the way, they know Porter will be professional in handling everything.
Photo Courtesy: Keith Allison/Flickr
Video Courtesy: TMZSports/YouTube