When the Pittsburgh Steelers got the opportunity to bring in Mike Munchak as their offensive line coach in 2014, they surely knew that there was a high probability it would be a relatively short stint. His five years in their offensive line room was huge in transforming the entire offense, but he’s moved on now, and passed the baton to his assistant, Shaun Sarrett.
Sarrett has been an assistant since 2012 in Pittsburgh and has obviously worked under Munchak for the past five years. He sat down with Missi Matthews recently for the team’s website to talk about the influence the veteran coach had on him.
But he also talked about the fact that this isn’t his first rodeo either. As I said, he has already been here working with these linemen since 2012. That’s as long as David DeCastro has been in Pittsburgh. And they knew he got the job immediately and were the first ones to make contact after the new broke.
“They actually reached out to me”, he told Matthews about his linemen. They knew about it pretty fast. I’m sure it got around the circuit pretty fast. [Maurkice Pouncey] had texted me, and [Alejandro Villanueva]’s texted me. Al’s called me a couple times just to talk about drills and so forth. He’s just looking to the next challenge at hand. So it’s been good”.
Everybody in that offensive line room has spent all or most of their career working with Sarrett in some capacity, a fact that is not lost on anybody involved in the coaching and preparation of the line year in and year out, and he acknowledges that that is going to be a key advantage heading into his first season as the head offensive line coach.
“I think it’s really helped out a lot. Just like Coach Munch going to Denver, he’s got to get to those guys, where for me, I already know our room”, he told Matthews. “I know what makes them tick, I know what upsets them, I know what motivates them. So that’s a great thing to have in your pocket already going into the offensive line room”.
This has seemingly been hard for some to acknowledge, but Sarrett is a coach who already has the respect of the offensive linemen in the room. They have been working with him for all or most of their careers and have seen how he has risen his craft working under Munchak’s tutelage for half a decade.
That alone is not going to guarantee him success as he enters this next big stage of his coaching career, but he already has the belief of the men that he’s coaching, because he’s already been coaching them for years, and they have transferred his teaching into tangible success on the field. You couldn’t ask for a much better starting point.