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Mike Tomlin supports NFL’s taunting crackdown, but disagreed with call against Steelers

Steelers coach Mike Tomlin has been one of the most vocal supporters of the NFL’s crackdown on taunting, saying last month that he thought it was an important part of making NFL players good role models for young players.

But on Sunday, when a taunting call went against Steelers wide receiver Ray Ray McCloud for a first-down point that the officials interpreted as pointing in the face of an opponent, Tomlin wasn’t happy. Tomlin said after the game that he thought the officials erred by flagging McCloud

“I categorically disagreed with it. I thought that Ray Ray was signaling first down, and he turned around to do so and the guy just happened to be there. I think we have to exercise some common sense,” Tomlin said.

But if Tomlin is going to support the NFL’s taunting crackdown, he needs to acknowledge that any time the league adds a point of emphasis, that means telling the officials to look for a penalty to call — and sometimes they’re going to look a little too hard. Tomlin’s team benefited from a questionable taunting call earlier this season against the Bears, and now he knows how it feels to be on the other end of a questionable taunting call.