Our good friend Terry Bradshaw is back in the headlines. He’s keeping with his critical stance on the Pittsburgh Steelers, this time telling Sporting News that Todd Haley shouldn’t have been fired by Mike Tomlin.
“Haley was a great play-caller,” Bradshaw explained to Sporting News last week. “They had great success together. For the life of me, I have not figured out why they fired Todd Haley. Didn’t they put up 42 points against the Jaguars?”
Instead, Bradshaw says the changes should’ve been made on the defensive side of the football.
“It would seem to me more like the head coach has to recognize the people he’s hiring to run that defense aren’t doing the job. Firing Haley made no sense.”
There’s no question Haley is a strong play caller who maximizes production from his playmakers. As we’ve mentioned several times throughout, from a strictly on-field perspective, Haley deserved to be kept. What got him fired was everything else. His relationship with Ben Roethlisberger, one that was never great, and perhaps other members of the coaching staff too. With the Steelers having someone like Randy Fichtner, who had such a great rapport with Roethlisberger, it was a logical move.
In certain moments, at least the lack of communication between Roethlisberger and Haley hurt the team. Most notably in the debacle against the New England Patriots, where Roethlisberger was spotted away from Haley as officials reviewed Jesse James’ goal line catch. When it was overturned, the Steelers didn’t seem to have a plan, and that poor preparation led to a game-ending interception.
But you know the whole story – I don’t think I need to re-litigate the problems to anyone but, apparently, Bradshaw.
Of course, he does have a valid point when asking how the defensive staff remained the same. I wrote that Keith Butler should’ve been retained but changes along the coaching staff would’ve been a welcomed sight, starting with Joey Porter. It appears the entire staff will be kept intact, the only changes coming from the offensive side of the football. Perhaps that is Tomlin taking the blame, considering that multiple reports said he was running the defense for chunks of the season.