Look, I’m just as disappointed as many of you are about the 2012 Pittsburgh Steelers. It was a season that offered some promise and at the very least another trip to the playoffs if nothing else. Those dreams crashed and burned with offensive ineptitude and a defense that couldn’t create enough big plays.
There will be and is lots of blame to go around and I know this will upset some of you but Mike Tomlin is not getting fired. Did he have a poor season? Well, that’s like asking if the Rooney Family is Irish. Like players, coaches can have bad seasons too and Tomlin certainly falls in to that category.
Those of you calling for him to be sent packing must be forgetting that you root for the Pittsburgh Steelers. This is a franchise that has had three, count’em THREE head coaches since 1969!! The Rooney Family does not take kindly to knee jerk reactions and they won’t in this case either.
Do you realize how ridiculous we sound to other teams’ fans when we call for a guy who has been to two Super Bowls and is just 40 years old to be fired? Imagine being a Chargers’ fan or a Lions fan or for the love of God a Browns’ fan!! Look at some the crap they’ve had to endure over the years and maybe you’ll see things differently.
Does Tomlin have things to prove? Absolutely he does. He has to address the special teams’ issues and he must bring in a new offensive line coach. He’ll have some soul-searching to do when it comes to his coordinators but I see no changes there, sorry to disappoint many of you.
Perhaps the biggest thing Tomlin has to do is review his game-management failures. He has to realize that his personnel has changed since he took the team over and yet he still coaches as if these are the same players they once were. A head coach must adapt to his team and I think this is where Tomlin has failed.
He often fails to recognize the ability of Shaun Suisham who has had a fantastic season, yet the entire fan base knows he can’t be relied on for anything over 50 yards yet Tomlin still trots him out there. He must realize that this team is not built to hammer the ball straight-ahead on a long fourth and one. If you’re going to go for it at mid-field then you have to be more creative than what has been shown in recent years.
This will be a big off-season for Mike Tomlin. He will have to work with Kevin Colbert and salary cap guru Omar Khan to decide who goes and who stays. In their place, he must find players who can make an impact and that will be around for a few years. Many of the Cowher-Era guys are on their way out if they haven’t left already so the pressure is on Tomlin to draft better than he has in the past and find free agents who can contribute at a fair wage.
No, Mike Tomlin is not going anywhere but I do believe he will be in serious trouble if this team does not make the playoffs next year. The Rooney’s are patient but they understand this isn’t the 70’s or 80’s anymore and the fans’ voice is stronger than ever. Steelers’ Nation has high expectations and no one knows that more than Tomlin.