Chase Claypool wants practices to be more fun.
His coach disagrees.
The Abbotsford Panthers grad and star receiver with the National Football League’s Pittsburgh Steelers suggested Monday that adding music to the team’s practices might help the struggling group. Claypool offered the thought a day after his crew fell 41-10 to their longtime rivals, the Cincinnati Bengals.
“We have music in the warm ups and that, so it’s fun,” the 23-year-old said in a Zoom call with reporters. “People are dancing, having fun. So I think maybe music would make practice more fun and little more uptempo.”
Mike Tomlin, the no-nonsense head coach in Pittsburgh, didn’t seem to appreciate the input.
“Claypool plays wideout and I’ll let him do that,” Tomlin said. “I’ll formulate the practice approach, and that division of labor is probably appropriate.”
A veteran teammate who takes things very seriously was even more blunt when asked about it on a Pittsburgh-area radio station.
“I hope he was kidding,” defensive end Cameron Heyward told Randy Baumann on the DVE Morning Show Tuesday morning, “Because as soon as he said it, I was literally about to rip the speaker out.”
“That is not what we need right now. It’s Xs and Os and it’s execution.”
Claypool’s Steelers are 5-5-1 and last in the four-team AFC North as they prepare to host division rival Baltimore (8-3) Sunday (Dec. 5).