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Steelers' Mike Tomlin Says Von Miller Is an Alien 'Visiting from Another Planet'

Tim Daniels@@TimDanielsBRFeatured Columnist IVOctober 5, 2022

MIAMI GARDENS, FLORIDA - SEPTEMBER 25: Von Miller #40 of the Buffalo Bills looks on prior to playing the Miami Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium on September 25, 2022 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Megan Briggs/Getty Images)
Von Miller (Megan Briggs/Getty Images)

Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin praised Buffalo Bills linebacker Von Miller ahead of the teams' Week 5 matchup.

"He's Von Miller," Tomlin told reporters Tuesday. "Some guys are aliens visiting from another planet, you know, and that's just the reality of it. Man, in the National Football League, you've got to respect all these guys—they're all freaky. But some guys are even freaky in our setting. And he's just one of those guys."

The Bills viewed Miller as the potential missing piece of their championship puzzle, signing him to a six-year, $120 million contract in March, and he's already paying dividends with three sacks during the team's 3-1 start.

It's been much the same story since the Denver Broncos selected the dynamic linebacker with the second pick in the 2011 draft. He won the Defensive Rookie of the Year Award and never looked back, earning eight Pro Bowl selections and winning two Super Bowl titles.

"He always has been [special] since he came out of [Texas] A&M, moving and changing and running like a corner," Tomlin said. "He needs no endorsement from me. His resume is his resume. Kudos to Von Miller. Tip of the cap to Von Miller.''

Perhaps the only surprise is that he's still playing at such a high level at age 33 when most players have started to decline. He leads the NFL in pass-rush win rate through four weeks at 38 percent, per ESPN.

"We talk about his talents often," Tomlin said. "But this guy is a scientist. He works at his craft. He encourages, trains others to do so that are like him. That edge-rush summit and things that he's a critical component of, I've got a lot of respect for."

The Steelers are tasked with slowing Miller and the Bills' edge-rushers while trying to protect rookie quarterback Kenny Pickett, who'll make his first career start Sunday.

If Pickett can find some semblance of success against the league's top-ranked defense in one of the toughest road environments in the NFL, it'll be a promising sign for the rest of his debut campaign.

Miller and Co. won't make life easy on him, however, as they attempt to continue their season-long hunt for the top seed in the AFC.

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