Are the Steelers the victim of their own success or, perhaps more accurately, the victim of their own reputation? After the wide receivers coach Scottie Montgomery left to take a position with his alma mater, Duke University, I started to wonder. Is this rats off a sinking ship? Is this go while the going is good? Is Todd Haley terrible to work with and coaches want to leave as soon as anything decent is offered to them? Or, perhaps it is coincidental. No one would have predicted that Bruce Arians would get a head coaching job so soon after taking the OC position in Indianapolis. Naturally some staff from his long tenure in Pittsburgh would want to leave to work with him. However, if you look at it, the main offensive coaching staff will be relatively new for the 2013 season. The transition below those position is unknown, but has likely changed some too.
Is it a good thing or will this affect cohesiveness during the start of the season? The Offensive Line, the Wide Receivers, and Special teams all have new coaches. As far as I can tell, the Running Backs coach, Kirby Wilson, is not leaving. He returned to the Steelers organization in summer 2012 after suffering burns from a house fire. I haven’t seen anything to indicate he is transitioning. If Wilson finds another position, then maybe Haley has influenced some “housecleaning” in the organization. At this point, I’ll chalk it up to coincidence and not some bigger conspiracy. But, you have to admit, it does seem like a lot of transition for a team that did not replace the head coach. In my mind, this kind of transition is more normal if there has been a head coaching change.
As far as the replacements go, how much influence does the offensive coordinator have when it comes to positions for that side of the ball? I would imagine it varies between organizations, but it doesn’t surprise me that a member of Haley’s former team, the Kansas City Chiefs, was hired to work alongside him. The hire from the Washington Redskins is also interesting. Hopefully, this set of individuals gels well together because if they don’t it will affect the locker room. Professionals or not, the players are still human and they will take their cue from the coaches. I think it is time for the disciplinarian Mike Tomlin to reappear and set the tone for the rest of his coaches. Enough fooling around. The penalties, fumbles, and ball drops last year made the Pittsburgh Steelers look like the Keystone Cops. Time to get back to playing Steeler football.