The Pittsburgh Steelers are now into the offseason, following a year in which they had high hopes for Super Bowl success, but ultimately fell short of even reaching the postseason at 8-8. It was a tumultuous season, both on the field and within the roster, and the months to follow figure to have some drama as well, especially in light of the team’s failure to improve upon the year before.
The team made some bold moves over the course of the past year, and some areas of the roster look quite a bit different than they did a year ago, or even at the start of the regular season. Whether due to injuries or otherwise, a lot has transpired, and we’re left to wonder how much more will change prior to September.
How will Ben Roethlisberger’s rehab progress as he winds toward recovery from an elbow injury that cost him almost the entire season? What about some of the key young players, some of whom have already impressed, others still needing quite a bit of growth? Will there be changes to the coaching staff? The front office? Who will they not retain in free agency, and whom might they bring in?
These are the sorts of questions among many others that we have been exploring on a daily basis and will continue to do so. Football has become a year-round pastime and there is always a question to be asked, though there is rarely a concrete answer, as I’ve learned in my years of doing this.
Question: Will the Steelers make any other changes to the coaching staff outside of the signing of Matt Canada as quarterbacks coach?
The news of the Steelers hiring Matt Canada yesterday seemed to come out of nowhere. Like most of their recent hires, his resume is one of strictly collegiate experience, like Eddie Faulkner and Tom Bradley. The Indiana native spent one season at Pitt as their quarterbacks coach, and has spent the majority of his career, over many stops, as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. He spent 2019 out of football.
Yesterday, Art Rooney II told reporters that the hire was ultimately up to him, and it was based largely on the comfort that already existed with Canada, having been familiar with him during is season at Pitt in 2016. He also indicated that there could be other hires, at Mike Tomlin’s discretion, to be possibly finalized next week.
The question is, then, whether or not there will be any hires. To the best of my knowledge, there are no coaches whose contracts are currently set to expire this season, as was the case for James Saxon and Joey Porter last year.
That said, it’s not apparent what the status of Ray Sherman is. Sherman, of course, was hired as wide receivers coach after Darryl Drake suddenly passed away during training camp. Was he under contract for just that season, on an interim basis?
Outside of that, it wouldn’t exactly be shocking if Bradly were let go and Teryl Austin appointed the defensive backs coach, or some shakeup there occurring. The hiring of an outside linebackers coach is also a possibility. And we never know when James Daniel might retire as tight end coach. They may even look for a change there given the state of the position.