While everyone continues to focus on an (hopefully) improved rushing attack for the Pittsburgh Steelers under first-year offensive coordinator Matt Canada, the longtime college football play caller isn’t focusing strictly on improving the run game.
Instead (and unsurprisingly), Canada is focusing on the Steelers’ offense being “good enough in all facets” of the game with Ben Roethlisberger under center. All facets will include not only the run game, but play-action passing, work out of shotgun, pistol, some pony, and more.
With a good defense on the other side of the field in Pittsburgh, all attention will be on the Steelers’ offense to be good enough week to week to keep the Steelers in contention under longtime head coach Mike Tomlin.
“The defense can stop any play they want. I’ve said that forever. If a defense wants to stop the run, they can stop the run. If a defense wants to stop a pass, they can stop a pass,” Canada said to reporters Wednesday. “Our ability to run the ball when we have to run it or throw the ball when we have to throw it is what takes great offenses to where they want to be. But if we’re gonna run the football—which is something we definitely want to focus on—if you only run it out of certain looks, then they know that. So, you have to have play-action pass off that, in our opinion, to be somebody that’s hard to defend. It’s what the defense allows you to do, what the defense matchup presents for you. We just want to be good enough in all facets that whatever they’re trying to stop, we can do the other one.”
That’s quite refreshing to hear from Canada, especially after listening to Randy Fichtner drone on and on over the years about the Steelers playing to their strengths and rarely adjusting throughout games, if at all.
The offense under Canada is still certainly a work in progress, especially with some of the injury and experience issues along the offensive line, but there should be no concerns with the skill positions being able to be good enough in all facets to keep the Steelers competitive, especially Ben Roethlisberger and rookie running back Najee Harris. It all comes down to the health and play off the offensive line though. If the young guys up front can gell quickly and play passable football, Canada’s goal of being good enough in all facets will be reached.