2021 Offseason Questions: Should Steelers Promote Matt Canada To OC Or Look Outside Organization?

The Pittsburgh Steelers’ 2020 season is now in the books, and it ended in spectacular fashion—though the wrong kind of spectacular—in a dismal postseason defeat at the hands of the Cleveland Browns, sending them into an early offseason mode after going 12-4 in the regular season and winning the AFC North for the first time in three years.

After setting a franchise record by opening the year on an 11-game winning streak, they followed that up by losing three games in a row, going 1-4 in the final five games, with only a 17-point comeback staving off a five-game slide. But all the issues they had in the regular season showed up in the postseason that resulted in their early exit.

The only thing facing them now as they head into 2021 is more questions, and right now, they lack answers. What will Ben Roethlisberger do, and what will they do with him? What will the salary cap look like? How many free agents are they going to lose? Who could they possibly afford to retain? Who might they part ways with—not just on the roster, but also on the coaching staff?

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: Should the Steelers promote Matt Canada to offensive coordinator or hire from outside of the organization?

Outside perhaps of questions over which major players may or may not be on the team in 2021, I don’t suppose that there is a bigger question concerning the Steelers right now than this. Now that they have announced that they will be moving on from Randy Fichtner as offensive coordinator, what comes next?

They can basically go one of two directions: either they promote from within, with the obvious candidate being Matt Canada—most of the rest of the offensive coaching staff is gone anyway—or they can look outside of the organization for a veteran offensive coordinator candidate.

Canada has a year in the Steelers’ system, but he’s also new to the NFL, even with extensive college experience. Yet the Miami Dolphins thought highly enough of him that they were interested in interviewing him for their own offensive coordinator position.

But perhaps it’s time for something different, and it’s certainly easy to get the sense that many prefer to lean in that direction. There are a number of candidates out there who might fit the bill, and we have been and will be taking a look at some of the possibilities.

Because it is now required that teams interview at least one minority candidate for coordinator positions, it is inevitable that there will be an interview process, and they won’t simply just hire Canada, so it’s only a matter of time before we start getting names of official candidates.

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