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SteelCityMom
02-07-2011, 01:08 PM
Cardinals pursue Steelers assistant Butler for DC position


By Jason La Canfora National Football League
NFL Network Insider
Published: Feb. 7, 2011 at 12:39 p.m.
Updated: Feb. 7, 2011 at 12:56 p.m.

The Arizona Cardinals (http://www.nfl.com/teams/arizonacardinals/profile?team=ARI) are formally pursuing Pittsburgh Steelers (http://www.nfl.com/teams/pittsburghsteelers/profile?team=PIT) linebackers coach Keith Butler for their vacant defensive coordinator position, according to league sources.


Butler is the coach-in-waiting behind Dick LeBeau as Pittsburgh's defensive coordinator, but he is intrigued by the Cardinals' opening and Steelers officials expect him to take it.


A Steelers source said the team likely would not block the move. Monday is the first day the Cardinals can officially approach Butler for permission to interview and they intend to do just that. Butler is close with Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt from their time together on the Steelers staff and their friendship extends beyond football.


The Steelers are hopeful that LeBeau will return for another season -- and he has indicated he plans to -- though retirement is a year-to-year proposition.


LeBeau's contract is set to expire and the Steelers would very much like to keep him.

http://www.nfl.com/news/story/09000d5d81e319be/article/cardinals-pursue-steelers-assistant-butler-for-dc-position

sexyllama
02-07-2011, 01:13 PM
I think this is bad... Butler has been a rock in getting the LB's to play.

I really did not like the play calling and the pass defense gameplan. I.E see what Rex did with vs. Tom Brady (made awesome adjustments)

LeBeau is incredible but the Defense has looked a play or two behind the for long stretches in the playoffs.

Go Steelers!

Spidey
02-07-2011, 01:21 PM
Wasn't impressed by LeBeau'S gameplan last night, we new what they'd do and we didn't stop it, okay the bodies we have got aren't great in the DBackfieId, but they're put in the positions to do the job, did we really think that Gay/Bmac/Clark and Troy were up to it last night?, looks like Dick did.

Problem is he's got his favourites, Clark and Farrior for instance, really think it's time for him to step down and let Butler take over. imho.

Atlanta Dan
02-07-2011, 01:32 PM
Successful teams usually lose coaches - if LeBeau is not stepping down it is not unreasonable for Butler to want to step up somewhere else - Butler is another Cowher holdover so if Butler does leave it will give Tomlin a chance to further develop his own coaching staff - notice nobody is beating the door down to hire the O-coordinator

I had read DB coach Ray Horton was also being mentioned for a coordinator job but with the paly of that secondary i have no idea why

pete74
02-07-2011, 01:37 PM
i would rather promote Butler right now then lose him. i would hate to lose butler then Dick retire next year and we end up stuck

sexyllama
02-07-2011, 01:55 PM
Exactly Pete,

Why lose Butler now? One more year of LeBeau would be awesome but losing Butler at this point is bad.

Ray Horton is a Tomlin hire and has been coaching 15 years or so. Not to be mean but he needs to go, obviously his experience and wisdom isn't translating to better Defensive backfield play. In fact they've been the de facto weak link... more importantly have we even developed on CB or SAFETY in the last 5 years?

Also, the QB coach needs to go. How come Ben got more coaching/improvement from his suspension? If I were Tomlin I'd be scratching my head for those comments from Ben. How come the QB coach doesn't speed up his release, etc.

I love Ben but I think he can take the next step to be like Steve Young and the QB coach needs to get him there. Seriously when Ben is on, he's incredible... some of those pass he makes ... wow.... then those interceptions. He had 7 Turnovers in 3 Playoff games. QB Coach needs to get an exercise or mental game for Consistency.

llama

jaygorius
02-07-2011, 02:03 PM
I have to agree. Not sure if it sounds crazy but I would rather see Lebeau retire now and keep Bulter then lose Butler just to have Lebeau retire in a season or two.

I by no means want Lebeau to leave now, but let's face it he is only going to be here for a few more years at most.

pete74
02-07-2011, 02:06 PM
yep if butler leaves then horton is next in line and with him as our dc we will be a joke. i would promote butler to dc today if it was my call.

CaliStillersFan
02-07-2011, 02:11 PM
When will the Cardinals learn that if Pittsburgh is willing to let someone leave, then there's probably a reason. Lebeau will be around for many years to come, or at least long enough to train a replacement when he's ready to retire. Pittsburgh's LB's have been great for decades prior to Butler and Lebeau's arrival, and they will be long after they leave. If Butler wants to leave a winner like the Steelers for better job title, all I have to say is good luck and enjoy losing. Money and job titles mean nothing when your team sucks and the owner has ZERO motivation to win. All he has to do is look at how many players the Cards have left from their Super Bowl run 2 years ago. I'd rather be the waterboy for the Steelers than the DC for the Cards.

SteelCityMom
02-07-2011, 02:23 PM
Who knows...maybe if they (the Rooneys) talk to Butler and Lebeau about it (assuming Butler is seriously contemplating going there), maybe Lebeau would decide to do the right thing and step down and allow Butler to take over.

From everything I've read before, it never sounded like Butler wanted to leave...and I love Lebeau, but you've got to figure he's only got another year or two (max) before retirement. And he certainly doesn't seem like the type to stick around, at a huge cost to the Steelers, for some kind of personal gain or glory.

LegendSteel
02-07-2011, 02:24 PM
Pittsburgh's LB's have been great for decades prior to Butler and Lebeau's arrival, and they will be long after they leave.

This. People forget that not too long ago LeBeau was Cincinnati's head coach, yet the Steelers were still churning out great linebackers (Porter, Gildon, Holmes, Haggans, Bell, etc.) and playing in AFC Championship games.

I have much faith that the Steelers know what they are doing and will hire the right person if need be.

sexyllama
02-07-2011, 02:36 PM
Really? Coaches fall off trees?

Ray Horton, Secondary Coach 3 years?
-no developed starters in 3 years
-no depth developed
-no great gameplan vs. spread 3-5 wide (see Sexy Rexy and Dennis Thurman)
-none of our nickel and dime backs can even play competent zone

Fitchner, QB Coach?
-Ben fixes his release, step, and minor throwing problems WHILE ON SUSPENSION
-Ben still doesn't use RB's checkdowns or 3rd / 4th reads (wide open last night in SB)
-Ben *should* be ELITE, I really think he's could be a Steve Young type thrower but isn't consistent. Look at half the throws in the SB, that throw to Wallace for the TD was perfect. Then look at the ugly interception or throws into double coverage.
-Love Ben he should be even better at this point
-I just don't understand how major improvement came from SUSPENSION... stunned actually...

Llama

pete74
02-07-2011, 02:45 PM
Who knows...maybe if they (the Rooneys) talk to Butler and Lebeau about it (assuming Butler is seriously contemplating going there), maybe Lebeau would decide to do the right thing and step down and allow Butler to take over.

From everything I've read before, it never sounded like Butler wanted to leave...and I love Lebeau, but you've got to figure he's only got another year or two (max) before retirement. And he certainly doesn't seem like the type to stick around, at a huge cost to the Steelers, for some kind of personal gain or glory.

agree 100%. Butler did one hell of a job with out LB's over the years and working under Lebeau i see him as the next great defensive guru. like you said Lebeau only has another year or 2 tops and if we lose Butler now we will be hurting then

cloppbeast
02-07-2011, 03:13 PM
What were they talking to Jeff Fisher about? He's defensive minded, isn't he?

Curtain_of_Steel
02-07-2011, 03:17 PM
I'll still take Lebeau over butler. Butler is who he is because of Dick. Wouldn't mind a 3 year committment from Lebeau though.

Butler may see the Cardinals as a quick way to being a head coach. Wiz is an 0-4 start away from being fired anyway.

Keep inmind how the assitant coach thing didnt work out in Philly after Johnson died there and the assit was being groomed to take over. He is unemployeed now.

Curtain_of_Steel
02-07-2011, 03:18 PM
Jeff can come in for a year or 2 under Lebeau. I would love him to come on board.

Mr. Goosemahn
02-07-2011, 03:44 PM
First of all, the next candidate for the D-Coordinator job would be D-Line coach John Mitchell, not Ray Horton.

Secondly, you can't blame Horton for lack of success when he's had a lack of talent. William Gay, Ryan Mundy, Keenan Lewis, Joe Burnett, and Crezdon Butler are the guys the team has given him. Not quite elite material to mold great players from.

Still, Horton has had success. He coached up Ike Taylor back into a starter. Remember, when Tomlin arrived, Cowher had benched Taylor in favor of McFadden and Townsend. It was a combined effort from both Tomlin and Horton to make him our #1 CB. Polamalu's best seasons have come with Horton as his coach. He turned William Gay into one of the best nickel CB's in the league, even though he was a 6th roun pick with average speed.

Mundy, while not great, is a solid contributor for a 6th rounder. Keenan Lewis is the CB version of Anthony Smith. All the physical tools to succeed, but he's a hothead who loses his cool.

So, IMO, given what he's had to work with, Horton has done a good job.

Mr. Goosemahn
02-07-2011, 03:46 PM
Also, my #1 candidate from out of the organization would be GB LB coach Kevin Greene. Did a hell of a job with both Woodley and Matthews.

Steelrule
02-07-2011, 04:35 PM
Arizona - where coaches go to wither on the vine and die. The Whiz had his shot with Warner and almost came away with it. Its pretty much been a disaster since then. SOC (Same Old Cardinals)

LegendSteel
02-07-2011, 04:37 PM
Arizona - where coaches go to wither on the vine and die. The Whiz had his shot with Warner and almost came away with it. Its pretty much been a disaster since then. SOC (Same Old Cardinals)

He pulled a McDaniels and pretty much single-handedly dismantled that team. Almost the entire core was let go (Boldin, Dansby, Rolle). All they have left is Fitz, and while he's still putting up decent numbers, he's rotting away in AZ.

Farrior_roirraW
02-07-2011, 04:38 PM
Man, I want to keep both!

pete74
02-07-2011, 06:36 PM
Jeff can come in for a year or 2 under Lebeau. I would love him to come on board.

do you really think he will do that? im willing to bet he takes the year off then becomes a head coach next season

Atlanta Dan
02-07-2011, 06:46 PM
Fisher was a head coach for over 15 years - I do not see him pulling a Dom Capers and being a great D-coordinator after 2 failed runs as a HC - after that much time in the big chair and making some serious bank there is no need for Fisher to be a DC - it would be like Cowher returning as a DC

sexyllama
02-07-2011, 07:24 PM
Secondly, you can't blame Horton for lack of success when he's had a lack of talent. William Gay, Ryan Mundy, Keenan Lewis, Joe Burnett, and Crezdon Butler are the guys the team has given him. Not quite elite material to mold great players from.

Still, Horton has had success. He coached up Ike Taylor back into a starter. Remember, when Tomlin arrived, Cowher had benched Taylor in favor of McFadden and Townsend. It was a combined effort from both Tomlin and Horton to make him our #1 CB. Polamalu's best seasons have come with Horton as his coach. He turned William Gay into one of the best nickel CB's in the league, even though he was a 6th roun pick with average speed.

Mundy, while not great, is a solid contributor for a 6th rounder. Keenan Lewis is the CB version of Anthony Smith. All the physical tools to succeed, but he's a hothead who loses his cool.

So, IMO, given what he's had to work with, Horton has done a good job.

And Kugler had the cream of the crop? Sorry I just don't see it. Kugler was working with FA dregs in his first year and they were our best unit in the Super Bowl. I was stunned at how well they did. What 5.5+ yards a carry? Ben had one sack? He had plenty of time to make 85%+ of his passes and he flat out missed them...

As for our Secondary- nobody past IKE, CLARK, or POLO made much of a difference... (Kugler one year and big difference) Horton has 3 years and pretty much no difference. Look how bad our zone defense is... They had so little trust in our zone that they even played man-to-man on 3 and 10 plus and got us burned for 12 yards, 38 yards, etc.

Now I sort of understand why Cowher changed out plenty of assistants and OC's... after 2-3 years you know if they "HAVE" it... sorry HORTON and our QB Coach don't.

Actually, I'm less concerned about Butler as the Dennis Thurman/Jets, etc would be really good candidates as D-Coord... (maybe some new blood might be good)

Llama

Spinlcrack
02-07-2011, 08:11 PM
Also, my #1 candidate from out of the organization would be GB LB coach Kevin Greene. Did a hell of a job with both Woodley and Matthews.

That's what I was thinking. Greene was there when Capers implemented the 3/4 in Green Bay, so he probably had an opportunity to get inside the philosophy even deeper than a coach coming into an established system, mainly due to the teaching aspect.

If Butler goes and Dick stays a year or two, I can't think of anyone I'd rather have as the DC.