I still can't figure out why the Ravens vice president of public and community relations Kevin Byrne released a statement on CBS airing John Harbaugh's post-game comment on the Steelers. Sure, CBS said it was a mistake and that they didn't mean to. But in all actuality, it doesn't matter. It's not like anyone anywhere else wasn't thinking the same thing.
The Steelers lost to the Jets. Maybe they didn't get their "asses beat" as Harbaugh said, but they still lost to the Jets. That's embarrassing in its own right. The freakin' Jets. It was one of those typical losses that can happy to any NFL team after a win. Harbaugh essentially said that anything can happen in this league, but perhaps in not the most eloquent fashion.
Harbaugh apparently told the CBS folks they couldn't air this portion of his postgame speech. Something happened in the chain of command and the network did. Byrne then released this statement:
"The comments made by John Harbaugh in the locker room following today's victory over the Titans were meant for Ravens players and coaches only. The CBS-TV crew that was in the locker room was told by Coach Harbaugh that it could not broadcast what he was about to say. When Coach Harbaugh finished talking about various things happening around the NFL and in the AFC North, he told the crew that it could now use what he was going to say. Inexplicably, CBS-TV then aired comments Coach Harbaugh specifically said were not to leave the locker room. CBS-TV immediately pulled the video and apologized to the Ravens."
CBS released a statement of its own, apologizing for the mishap.
I get it, the team doesn't want Harbaugh to come across as a trash-talker. But it's not like the 15 other winning coaches this week aren't saying similar things to their players. This one just happened to go public.
The CBS folks on site had an agreement with the team. At some point, someone didn't get the instructions on publishing the video. So yeah, it's CBS's fault in that respect. Then again, the easiest way to avoid any potential problems would be to just not say anything at all with a camera rolling. But that wouldn't be as much fun. These looks inside the locker room after games are a great way to pique even more NFL fan interest. Having the same boring sound clips thrown onto a screen each week defeats what should be the intended purpose.
I'm not saying we should encourage coaches and players to talk endless amounts of nonsense at defeated opponents or rivals. But in context, this is a great look at how teams pay attention to other games during divisional races.
After all, the Steelers lost to the Jets. The Jets. The 2-8 Jets. The same Steelers that looked all-world against Indianapolis and Baltimore put up 13 points in a loss to the Jets. It doesn't matter if Harbaugh, Snoop Dogg, Justin Bieber, President Obama or Hello Kitty weigh in on the game. It was an embarrassing loss for Pittsburgh. And in all honesty, I'd expect, and hope for the same, from the Steelers coach Mike Tomlin if the roles were reversed in this non-controversy.