Mike Tomlin Gets the Entire Steelers Team a Gift Before Week One, and the Internet Has Some Thoughts

by Suzanne Halliburton

Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin gifted each of his players a pair of shoes, Saturday, as the team readies for Joe Burrow and his AFC champion Cincinnati Bengals.

Tomlin handed out pairs of black Air Force Ones. The Steelers players loved it. And other athletes, including LeBron James, thought the gift was hilarious. So chalk one up for the Steelers, right? We’ll explain.

Pittsburgh running back Najee Harris first shared a video clip of the gifting moment. It quickly was circulated among giddy NFL fans. After all, Saturday is akin to Christmas Eve. It’s the day before the NFL season kicks off on full blast.

Mike Tomlin Asked a Steelers Favorite to Paint Shoes

Cody Sabol, a local Pittsburgh artist, painted the shoes for Tomlin. He tweeted a video of his work-in-action, captioning it:

“This was 4:38 Am Friday Morning. Nike was out of stock. I painted the 146 pairs of Air Forces Coach Tomlin gave the team this morning.”

Sabol is a huge Pittsburgh Steelers fan and he’s painted portraits of their stars. He also live paints pictures on shoes. That’s why he’s got quite the following.

So what’s the deal with the black Air Force Ones? In internet culture, the guys who wear these shoes are the ones giving a beat down. They’re the dangerous threats. If you see someone in these kicks, run the other way.

LeBron James applauded the idea. Bravo Pittsburgh Steelers.

He tweeted a bunch of laughing emojis, with “Coach Tomlin hilarious for that.”

Another fan of the Pittsburgh Steelers tweeted: “Name something more intimidating than Mike Tomlin wearing black air forces. i’ll wait.”

There were more comments. “Black air forces? Them boys coming to Cincy like GOONS!!!”

Then there was this from a Pittsburgh Steelers fan:

“Mike Tomlin bought the entire Steelers roster Black air forces They going 17-0.”

Pittsburgh Kicks off Post Ben Roethlisberger Era

This Pittsburgh Steelers-Cincinnati Bengals game should be an immediate treat for fans. After all, in a season opener, you get two top AFC North Rivals. The Bengals are hosting the Steelers. They swept them last year, with Cincy winning the division title on their way to a Super Bowl berth against the Los Angeles Rams. The Bengals lost to the Rams, 23-20, so no doubt Burrow and his team know they’re on the verge of greatness.

Meanwhile, the Steelers begin another era. This will be the first time since 2003 that Ben Roethlisberger hasn’t been on the sidelines. Pittsburgh finished 9-7-1 in 2021 and lost to the Kansas City Chiefs in the wildcard round. Mitchell Trubisky will be the Steelers QB1. Then there’s local favorite Kenny Pickett, who quarterbacked the Pittsburgh Panthers to an ACC title last year. Pittsburgh picked Pickett in the first round back in April.

With all these questions, no wonder Tomlin gifted his Pittsburgh Steelers with some special shoes. He needs his players rowdy and ready to go.