It’s been nearly two and a half weeks since the Pittsburgh Steelers 2019 season ended and so far, there’s been no news about any changes being made to the team’s coaching staff. Even Steelers special teams coordinator Danny Smith appears to be safe for 2020, judging by a little Tuesday news nugget.
According to Sarah McLellan, who covers the Minnesota Wild and NHL for Star Tribune Sports, Smith attended the team’s morning skate ahead of their Tuesday night game against the Pittsburgh Penguins and head coach Mike Tomlin was with him.
“He and Danny Smith, the special teams coordinator, came down,” Wild head coach Bruce Boudreau said on Tuesday, according to McLellan. “I’ve been to their camp a few times, and … I got to know [Smith] when he was with the [Washington] Redskins. We just stayed good friends.”
With the East-West Shrine game taking place this weekend and the Senior Bowl to follow next weekend, one would think that the Steelers would make whatever coaching staff changes they deemed necessary by now if they were going to make any at all.
For whatever it’s worth, the Steelers announced last week that two of the team’s coaching assistants, Denzel Martin and Blaine Stewart, had been selected as assistant coaches for the East-West Shrine Game. Martin will coach the special teams for the East Team while Stewart will coach the quarterbacks for the West Team.
Does this Tuesday NHL news nugget guarantee that Smith and the team’s other two coordinators, Randy Fichtner and Keith Butler, are all safe for the 2020 season? Not necessarily. However, there’s already been a report that Fichtner isn’t likely to be jettisoned and on the surface, Butler’s job is likely safe as well because of how the team’s defenses played this past season. In all seriousness, Smith seemed like his job status was the most vulnerable of the three heading into the offseason. That said, unless something happens between now and next weekend, expect Smith to be the Steelers special teams coordinator for an eighth season in 2020.