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: How much can Matt Canada do in 2021 to improve the Steelers’ offense?
While Steelers nation has been consumed by doom and gloom, resigned to the self-diagnosed impossibility of their favorite team finding success in this upcoming season, they seem to forget that they got what they wanted for the past year: Matt Canada as offensive coordinator. If I really wanted to be a jerk, I’m sure I can revisit the first articles we wrote about Canada and share all the comments made about how he needs to be offensive coordinator.
So the question for the day is this: with Randy Fichtner now gone, how much can Matt Canada do, in 2021, to make the offense better? This unit obviously had major problems, and by and large fell off a cliff in the final month or so of the season, so what can a new offensive coordinator with a different vision do?
There will also be a new offensive line coach, a new quarterbacks coach, and a new tight ends coach, while their wide receivers coach will be in his second year and their running backs coach in his third year. The offensive staff is completely different from even what it was in just 2018.
So often, we hear that the Steelers are outcoached when they lose. Now they have a whole slew of different coaches, with Canada being the biggest derivation Mike Tomlin has ever made to his coaching staff. Are we that confident that he won’t be able to do anything to improve things this year?