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Dungy: Same-day travel not a major distraction

Indianapolis Colts v Cleveland Browns

CLEVELAND - NOVEMBER 30: Head coach Tony Dungy of the Indianapolis Colts yells from the sideline during the second quarter while playing the Cleveland Browns on November 30, 2008 at Cleveland Browns Stadium in Cleveland, Ohio. Indianapolis won the game 10-6. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Tony Dungy

Gregory Shamus

The Steelers’ hotel in New Jersey can’t accommodate them, due to a lack of power. So they’ll make the trip to play the Giants on Sunday, and then they’ll come home after the game.

So how big of a problem will it be?

Former Buccaneers and Colts coach Dungy, who began his NFL career as a Steelers defensive back, tells PFT that it’s not a major issue.

“They should be OK but it’s not ideal,” Dungy said. “Players are creatures of habit and this will break up their routine.”

Dungy explained that he’d use same-day travel in the preseason, in order to put the team through the experience. He got the idea from former Vikings coach Dennis Green, who hired Dungy to serve as defensive coordinator in Minnesota.

“I took the Bucs on a bus at 5:30 a.m. to Jacksonville once to simulate problems,” Dungy said.

If Steelers coach Mike Tomlin, who worked for Dungy in Tampa, hasn’t previously used same-day travel in the preseason to prepare the players for potential unpredictability when the games count, Tomlin surely will in 2013 and beyond.