PDA

View Full Version : Cook: Steelers' Arians loves the pressure


mesaSteeler
09-10-2010, 12:37 AM
Cook: Steelers' Arians loves the pressure
Friday, September 10, 2010
By Ron Cook, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Peter Diana/Post-Gazette

Steelers offensive coordinator Bruce Arians: "I love the pressure. I love that bull's-eye on my back. I love having the responsibility in my hands."

There are a lot of ways the Steelers can beat the Atlanta Falcons Sunday. Dennis Dixon could play lights out. Rashard Mendenhall could run for 150 yards and three touchdowns. The defense could pitch a shutout. Troy Polamalu could return an interception for a score. But there's only one way the Steelers can lose. Offensive coordinator Bruce Arians screws things up by calling a rotten game.

That's the perception of many around town, isn't it?

"I've heard that," Arians said after practice Thursday.

You should have seen the man laugh. I'd like to say it was a belly laugh, but Arians doesn't have nearly the belly he did last season. He lost 35 pounds over the summer on a diet. His critics -- and they are many -- have a lot less of him to kick around.

That won't stop 'em, of course. Not that Arians cares. He learned a long time ago that scrutiny and criticism go with his job because everyone truly believes they can call the plays better than the offensive coordinator. He pays no attention to it. Certainly, he has paid no attention to it since the spring of 2007 when he was diagnosed with prostate cancer and had a prostatectomy.

It's amazing how being a cancer survivor changes a person's perspective about what's really important in life.

No doubt it helped Arians get through a tough season in '09. The Steelers' offense was prolific at times. Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger threw for 4,328 yards. Wide receivers Santonio Holmes and Hines Ward had 1,000-yard years. Tight end Heath Miller had 76 catches. Mendenhall ran for 1,108 yards. But, too often, the offense had a hard time running the ball in short-yardage situations, especially near the goal line. It didn't do enough to help the defense protect five fourth-quarter leads.

There was widespread speculation Arians would pay the price with his job after the Steelers finished 9-7 and missed the playoffs.

"You don't like hearing it," Arians said of an ESPN1250 radio report Jan. 5 that he was going to be fired, "especially when you feel like you did a pretty good job. I felt fine about [his job status], but you don't know for sure. Sometimes when there's smoke, there's fire ... "

Asked about the report in March, Steelers coach Mike Tomlin told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette's Ed Bouchette, "I don't know where it came from." For his part, Steelers president Art Rooney II told Bouchette that he didn't go to Tomlin to ask for Arians' job only to be talked out of the firing by Tomlin. "I never went to Mike and said we have to fire Bruce." All were vehement that any lobbying for Arians that Roethlisberger might have done had nothing to do with Arians being back. "It's really a joke," Tomlin said. Added Arians, "If they're going to fire you, they're going to fire you."

This much I know for sure:

I'm glad the Steelers didn't fire Arians. That wouldn't have been just an injustice, it would have been flat-out wrong. The team won the Super Bowl after the '08 season with him as coordinator. Roethlisberger loves playing for him. I sense that all of his guys do.

Now, it's a new season. You know what that means. Starting Sunday, all eyes will be on the Steelers' offense. All eyes will be on Arians' play-calling.

Bring on the scrutiny, the man said.

"I can't wait to get started. I'm really eager to see what we can do. This is a really good football team here."

Even with Dixon, who has gone from third-team quarterback to starter because of Roethlisberger's four-game NFL-mandated suspension and Byron Leftwich's knee injury?

"Dennis is going to be fine," Arians said. "It's a night-and-day difference where he is now as opposed to the Baltimore game" last season when Dixon made his first and only NFL start.

The circumstances are different as well.

"We didn't have a reliable backup at that point last season," Arians said. "It was like, 'Dennis, don't run. Throw the ball away if you have to. You can't get hurt.' Now we have Charlie Batch backing him up. We don't have to be afraid to let Dennis play."

Arians is expected to try to ease the pressure on Dixon by calling Mendenhall's number often. One change Rooney II did ask Tomlin to make after last season was to run the ball better. Not more, necessarily. Just better.

In other words, convert those third-and-1s and fourth-and-1s.

"There's no better feeling than handing the ball off and kicking [butt]," Arians said, clearly on board with that plan. "It's a bad feeling when you have to be tricky on third-and-1 ...

"I love to run the ball. That sets up what I love to do the most. Throw it deep."

Arians won't care what the Steelers' run-pass ratio is Sunday as long as they win. Nor will Rooney II or Tomlin.

Now Arians' critics ...

I think back to something Arians said during Super Bowl week after that '08 season.

"I could have stayed a quarterbacks coach or a wide receivers coach. I could have stayed out of the limelight. But that's not me. I love the pressure. I love that bull's-eye on my back. I love having the responsibility in my hands."

Scrutiny?

Really, bring it on.

The man can handle it.


Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/10253/1086440-66.stm#ixzz0z687pcKH

Fire Arians
09-10-2010, 12:50 AM
i didn't read it yet but

fire arians.

SteelKnight
09-10-2010, 01:09 AM
I love this quote:

"I love to run the ball. That sets up what I love to do the most. Throw it deep."

because the deep pass is my favorite too. This is why it took several years for Ward to become one of my favorites. I was always excited to see who would be across from him...the guy who could catch the deep ball...now it's Wallace and I like him slightly better than Ward.

mesaSteeler
09-10-2010, 01:10 AM
Arians thinks he a "pretty good job last year"!!! After losing to the Bengals twice, after the Cleveland disaster, after admitting he got carried away with passing and he thinks he did a pretty good job!

Arians has learned nothing. All he wants to do is throw deep, throw deep, throw deep.

Nor do I buy the whole cancer sob story, pity poor Bruce that the clown writer Cook needless inserted into the article. It doesn't cut any ice with me. I too am a cancer survivor. In last three months I was diagnosed and had a radical nefrectory for renal cell carcinoma. A condition that is far more lethal than prostate cancer. If my cancer comes back, and it has a 21% chance of doing so, then my mean time of survival is only 25 months.

Cook, an obvious Arians lover, has reached a new low with pity poor Bruce he's a cancer survivor so he cant be criticized schtick.

Truly pathetic writing.

tony hipchest
09-10-2010, 01:33 AM
i didn't read it yet but

fire arians.

:sofunny:

Atlanta Dan
09-10-2010, 08:51 AM
Look at the big brain on Bruce!

Let's see how talented a coordinator Arians is without #7 to improvise after the play collapses

Belichick got a lot smarter when he got to coach Brady as his QB and Shanahan got a lot dumber after Elway retired.

In his other column in the P-G today Cook predicts a 7-9 record this season
http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/10253/1086305-66.stm
I guess Cook would predict a 5-11 record if Bruce was not the O-coordinator

If this season crashes and burns (my prediction is an 8-8 record after a 1-3 start) the one upside will be Tomlin throwing Arians over the side in January as Tomlin starts trying to save his own neck

steeltheone
09-10-2010, 09:00 AM
The reason BR7 has to improvise is because our line is average. Yes i understand he sometimes holds on to the ball longer but overall our line play dictates his actions.

BlackAndGold4Ever
09-10-2010, 09:15 AM
I have made it known that I am not a Arians fan and have been on the "Fire Arians" bandwagon the last two years, but I want to see what he can do without Ben the first four games. If its business as usual I'll be calling for his head

Downbylaw
09-10-2010, 09:25 AM
Look at the big brain on Bruce!

Let's see how talented a coordinator Arians is without #7 to improvise after the play collapses

Belichick got a lot smarter when he got to coach Brady as his QB and Shanahan got a lot dumber after Elway retired.

In his other column in the P-G today Cook predicts a 7-9 record this season
http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/10253/1086305-66.stm
I guess Cook would predict a 5-11 record if Bruce was not the O-coordinator

If this season crashes and burns (my prediction is an 8-8 record after a 1-3 start) the one upside will be Tomlin throwing Arians over the side in January as Tomlin starts trying to save his own neck

All coaches success is predicated on their players. Walsh/Montana Shula/Griese/Csonka. Shula/Marino. Jimmy Johnson/Aikman. Bellicheat/Brady. Noll/Bradshaw (how was chuck post Bradshaw?). Bud Grant/Tarkenton. Holmgren/Favre. I mean it goes hand and hand.

Atlanta Dan
09-10-2010, 09:38 AM
The reason BR7 has to improvise is because our line is average. Yes i understand he sometimes holds on to the ball longer but overall our line play dictates his actions.

Agreed the line is mediocre, but when Arians starts puffing about the great stats the offense puts up it is not due to his pass happy schemes but the ability of #7 to keep the play alive

By way of illustration - Steelers get the ball back with 2 minutes to go in the second Bengals game last November and the play calling is limited to chucking the ball deep several times

Needing a touchdown to win, the Steelers began their final drive at their 33 with 1:50 remaining -- a situation in which Ben Roethlisberger has usually excelled. But, instead of picking his way downfield, Roethlisberger misfired on deep passes on second and third down and the drive ended with four consecutive incompletions. "We were just trying to get the ball down the field deeper because we needed chunks," offensive coordinator Bruce Arians said. "We didn't protect very well. We had to go a long way. We couldn't nickel-and-dime our way down there with that amount of time."

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/09320/1013806-66.stm

No explanation by Bruce as to how going 90 yards with intermediate "nickel and dime" pass routes had managed to work in February 2009. Had getting "chunks" of yardage been the plan with 2 minutes to go in SB XLIIII, the winning drive would never have occurred.

Arians explanation for everything, going back to at least the Denver game in 2007 when he came out throwing against one of the worst run defenses in the league and spent the next week casting blame elsewhere for that brain cramp, is that when something works it is due to his superior intellect and when it fails it is because the brilliant plan was not properly implemented by the players

tony hipchest
09-10-2010, 09:46 AM
Arians explanation for everything, going back to at least the Denver game in 2007 when he came out throwing against one of the worst run defenses in the league and spent the next week casting blame elsewhere for that brain cramp, is that when something works it is due to his superior intellect and when it fails it is because the brilliant plan was not properly implemented by the players

but see, everybody in the entire world knew we were gonna pound the ball and cram it down denvers throats. willie parker was running wild and leading the league in rushing, and the broncos were giving up 200+ yds to rushers every week.

even denver knew, so bruce knew they would spend all week practicing to stop the run. "we cant have THAT! i know! i will trick them and PASS the ball. they'll never prepare for that! :muhaha:

its a familiar scenario. everyone knows were gonna run the ball against the crappy browns in fridgid temperatures and 40 mph winds from a hurricaine. :banging:

Atlanta Dan
09-10-2010, 10:45 AM
All coaches success is predicated on their players. Walsh/Montana Shula/Griese/Csonka. Shula/Marino. Jimmy Johnson/Aikman. Bellicheat/Brady. Noll/Bradshaw (how was chuck post Bradshaw?). Bud Grant/Tarkenton. Holmgren/Favre. I mean it goes hand and hand.

Agreed it is difficult to win a Super Bowl without a great QB

But coaching does make a difference - the greatness of Joe Gibbs is illustrated by winning three Super Bowls with three different QBs (Theismann, Williams and Rypien) who are not going to Canton.

Good coaches achieve better results with the same talent than poor coaches do and poor coaches often get by because a QB saves their a** on an annual basis - if Belichick was coaching the Cowboys my bet is their post-season record over the last several years presumably would be better than it has been under Wade Phillips

Or, as Wade's father Bum described the skills of Don Shula

"He could take his'n and beat your'n; or take your'n and beat his'n."

IMO Bum's quote is not exactly a good fit for Arians

Downbylaw
09-10-2010, 10:53 AM
Agreed it is difficult to win a Super Bowl without a great QB

But coaching does make a difference - the greatness of Joe Gibbs is illustrated by winning three Super Bowls with three different QBs (Theismann, Williams and Rypien) who are not going to Canton.

Good coaches achieve better results with the same talent than poor coaches do and poor coaches often get by because a QB saves their a** on an annual basis - if Belichick was coaching the Cowboys my bet is their post-season record over the last several years presumably would be better than it has been under Wade Phillips

Or, as Wade's father Bum described the skills of Don Shula

"He could take his'n and beat your'n; or take your'n and beat his'n."

IMO Bum's quote is not exactly a good fit for Arians

Great post and LOTS of merit

Downbylaw
09-10-2010, 10:58 AM
Agreed the line is mediocre, but when Arians starts puffing about the great stats the offense puts up it is not due to his pass happy schemes but the ability of #7 to keep the play alive

By way of illustration - Steelers get the ball back with 2 minutes to go in the second Bengals game last November and the play calling is limited to chucking the ball deep several times

Needing a touchdown to win, the Steelers began their final drive at their 33 with 1:50 remaining -- a situation in which Ben Roethlisberger has usually excelled. But, instead of picking his way downfield, Roethlisberger misfired on deep passes on second and third down and the drive ended with four consecutive incompletions. "We were just trying to get the ball down the field deeper because we needed chunks," offensive coordinator Bruce Arians said. "We didn't protect very well. We had to go a long way. We couldn't nickel-and-dime our way down there with that amount of time."

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/09320/1013806-66.stm

No explanation by Bruce as to how going 90 yards with intermediate "nickel and dime" pass routes had managed to work in February 2009. Had getting "chunks" of yardage been the plan with 2 minutes to go in SB XLIIII, the winning drive would never have occurred.

Arians explanation for everything, going back to at least the Denver game in 2007 when he came out throwing against one of the worst run defenses in the league and spent the next week casting blame elsewhere for that brain cramp, is that when something works it is due to his superior intellect and when it fails it is because the brilliant plan was not properly implemented by the players

True but how do we know that he is not covering for his qb? Its the OC's job to call the plays and its the players job to execute them. Ben has the ability to Hot Route at the line of scrimmage. Arians calls his play before he sees the defense. If that certain play doesnt look like it will work against the defense that Ben sees, he should change it. Thats the meaning of a coach on the field. Manning, Brees, Brady and Favre do this all the time. I even recall Leftwich doing it against the skins. He noticed the corner off of Tone and he hot routed and threw a quick pass to Tone for the TD.

Atlanta Dan
09-10-2010, 12:25 PM
True but how do we know that he is not covering for his qb? Its the OC's job to call the plays and its the players job to execute them. Ben has the ability to Hot Route at the line of scrimmage. Arians calls his play before he sees the defense. If that certain play doesnt look like it will work against the defense that Ben sees, he should change it. Thats the meaning of a coach on the field. Manning, Brees, Brady and Favre do this all the time. I even recall Leftwich doing it against the skins. He noticed the corner off of Tone and he hot routed and threw a quick pass to Tone for the TD.

Although Arians may be covering for Ben because Bruce knows he is gone if Roethlisberger ever turns on him, Arians has never been bashful to call out players as the reason a call has failed in the past (e.g. - when a goal line run failed early in the first Bengals game in September 2009 Arians in all seriousness said the play was perfectly drawn up and would have resulted in a TD if it had been blocked correctly) - contrast that with whether you ever recall the other Steelers coordinator (the great Dick LeBeau) ever calling out a player in public for missing a play

As for Ben being able to check out of a play, when your coordinator is addicted to a pass first mentality (the low point in 2009 being the second Cleveland game when the Steelers gained 9 yards on two running plays on their first possession that night and then went empty backfield and threw an incomplete pass on 3rd and 1:banging:) there often is not much to check off with under those circumstaces

IMO it is the plays that are being called and the offensive philosophy underlying those calls that are the issue - at least that seems to be what AJR II was indiacting after he said there needed to bverenewed commitment to the runnning game after the 2009 season

Suitnam/Revefsreleets - if you are still monitoring this board care to jump in to renew your defense of B.A.?

Downbylaw
09-10-2010, 01:42 PM
Although Arians may be covering for Ben because Bruce knows he is gone if Roethlisberger ever turns on him, Arians has never been bashful to call out players as the reason a call has failed in the past (e.g. - when a goal line run failed early in the first Bengals game in September 2009 Arians in all seriousness said the play was perfectly drawn up and would have resulted in a TD if it had been blocked correctly) - contrast that with whether you ever recall the other Steelers coordinator (the great Dick LeBeau) ever calling out a player in public for missing a play

As for Ben being able to check out of a play, when your coordinator is addicted to a pass first mentality (the low point in 2009 being the second Cleveland game when the Steelers gained 9 yards on two running plays on their first possession that night and then went empty backfield and threw an incomplete pass on 3rd and 1:banging:) there often is not much to check off with under those circumstaces

IMO it is the plays that are being called and the offensive philosophy underlying those calls that are the issue - at least that seems to be what AJR II was indiacting after he said there needed to bverenewed commitment to the runnning game after the 2009 season

Suitnam/Revefsreleets - if you are still monitoring this board care to jump in to renew your defense of B.A.?

You are correce he even called out Dixon for running and not seeing open receivers. That being said, he doesnt call out Ben. For the reason that you just stated. If Ben turns on him, he is gone. No, I didnt say for Ben to check out of a play, I said he should Hot route. He should change the longer route to a shorter route according to the defense that he sees. If his pre snap read reads a cover 3, he should hot route to a quick pass to the receiver, automatic 5-8 yards due to the corner playing so far off the ball. This is precisely what Leftwich did. Also, Carson Palmer does it to us all the time as well as Brady.

Rooney was stating that we need to run the ball more effectively and I agree with that. A good smart Qb can eliminate a bad coordinator by simply being smart. You dont think Tom Moore (Colts), Pete Carmichael Jr (Saints) or The Pats OC, by the way WHO is the Pats OC? There is never any controversey with those OC's because the qbs eliminate them altogether by calling the plays that they see that is best to beat the defense. Ben is a 7 year vet, he should be way past just calling plays that are sent in.

Atlanta Dan
09-10-2010, 02:05 PM
Pats do not have an OC or DC - none are worthy to work with the superior intellect of Bill Belichick:sofunny:
http://www.boston.com/sports/football/patriots/articles/2010/09/09/head_coordinator/

In all seriousness, good points :drink:

Downbylaw
09-10-2010, 03:19 PM
Pats do not have an OC or DC - none are worthy to work with the superior intellect of Bill Belichick:sofunny:
http://www.boston.com/sports/football/patriots/articles/2010/09/09/head_coordinator/

In all seriousness, good points :drink:

Thats Bellicheat for ya. And good points by you as well!!:tt04:

joeyssteelcurtain
09-11-2010, 08:37 PM
Arians, check this article out.

Here is a direct quote from Arians: "I could have stayed a quarterbacks coach or a wide receivers coach. I could have stayed out of the limelight. But that's not me. I love the pressure. I love that bull's-eye on my back. I love having the responsibility in my hands."

Check this Arians quote out:
"I love to run the ball. That sets up what I love to do the most. Throw it deep."

This article makes me believe that Tomlin didn't have the heart to fire Arians. It also makes me believe that the FO just doesn't know what to do. They really must think that Arians is the man. What kind of spell does Arians have on the organization?

SH-Rock
09-11-2010, 11:21 PM
If this year Arians doesn't go then I have lost all hope in Tomlin

truesteelerfan
09-12-2010, 12:21 AM
I agree with you- bad play calling- says he doesn't need a FB despite his boss the HC, and the owner wants to run more, got caught in the past saying negative things about Tomlin- why is he so untouchable?

BKAnthem
09-12-2010, 10:30 AM
Arians, check this article out.

Here is a direct quote from Arians: "I could have stayed a quarterbacks coach or a wide receivers coach. I could have stayed out of the limelight. But that's not me. I love the pressure. I love that bull's-eye on my back. I love having the responsibility in my hands."

Check this Arians quote out:
"I love to run the ball. That sets up what I love to do the most. Throw it deep."

This article makes me believe that Tomlin didn't have the heart to fire Arians. It also makes me believe that the FO just doesn't know what to do. They really must think that Arians is the man. What kind of spell does Arians have on the organization?

Well this is the same FO that thought Kraig Urbick and AQ Shipley would bolster the O line Over say an Antoine Caldwell