I hate to tell you but I do believe it’s going to get worse and I’m not even talking about what may or may not happen on the field.
If you’re like me, you just want the final eight games of this season to magically be over.
Getting onto to the supposed blood-letting the offseason will bring is what I want to get to but we must be patient and endure the next eight weeks.
So why exactly will this get worse? Because decisions that will be made in early January and February will not be easy and there will be significant amounts of feelings hurt. This is football and its professional football to boot.
Feelings don’t matter and they never have.
The first decision will center on Dick LeBeau. Despite a legendary career his time to move on is here. The question is, will Mike Tomlin, Kevin Colbert or anyone named Rooney have the balls to assist LeBeau into retirement?
LeBeau leaving will not be easy. The defensive players love him like a father and are probably more embarrassed today than at any point in his tenure as defensive coordinator as well they should be. One thing is certain, it will not be an overly popular move to remove LeBeau in some circles but it is the right move. Leaving the decision up to him is the wrong move too and we know it.
Secondly will be the decision to keep Ben Roethlisberger or Todd Haley. There is no way that these two can co-exist for a third year and I don’t care how much Shark Week they watch together. One of the two will be back in 2014 and honestly, I really can’t tell you who it will be.
Art Rooney II will not like admitting the Haley hiring was a failure but the numbers and record have spoken for themselves. When the 2014 season begins, Roethlisberger will have two years remaining on his deal. Normally this might be a time when a QB gets a deal re-worked but don’t be so sure in this case. It isn’t impossible to think the Steelers won’t try shopping Roethlisberger to a quarterback-needy team.
That of course assumes Haley remains the offensive coordinator and don’t rule that out by any stretch of the imagination.
Third is the status of Mike Tomlin which I’ve commented on before and will only say this right now; he will be the head coach in 2014.
Lastly is the tenure of Kevin Colbert as the General Manager. While I believe it is time for him to go, he will most likely will not.
What these moves, or lack of moves will create is a new firestorm. You’ll have fans on one side of each decision celebrating while fans on the other will be crying foul. The dissension will not only be within the fan base but will also be within the front office as well.
We have to know that there will be a number of opinions on how to proceed after this embarrassing season and not all of them will be on the same page. Think about the combinations that could be left behind to coach and manage this team. Scary isn’t it?
If you think things are bad now, just wait a couple of months.
Marc Uhlmann writes for and co-owns www.steelcityblitz.com. Follow him on Twitter @steeldad and follow the website at @SCBlitz. He can be heard Mondays on Trib-Live Radio at 630pm ET talking Steelers and is a blogger for ESPN 970 in Pittsburgh.