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SH-Rock
04-05-2011, 05:16 PM
By James Walker

With two Super Bowl appearances the past three seasons, Mike Tomlin of the Pittsburgh Steelers has quickly placed himself among the NFL's coaching elite.

Tomlin finished second in ESPN.com's coaching Power Rankings following four consecutive winning seasons, two Super Bowl appearances and one championship. He trailed only New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick, who received all eight first-place votes from our panel.

Tomlin's rapid ascension up the coaching ranks is impressive. He was a relative unknown when the Steelers hired him in 2007. But his energy, charisma and passion for the game led to the Steelers not missing a beat following the switch from longtime Pittsburgh coach Bill Cowher.

Tomlin's biggest strength is his leadership. He commands respect and knows how to push the right buttons within his locker room. But Tomlin also gives his players enough rope when needed and relates to them extremely well. That tough balance is where a lot of head coaches fall short.

I don't know if any coach could have handled quarterback Ben Roethlisberger's off-the-field issues and subsequent suspension as well as Tomlin last year. There was a dark cloud hanging over the Steelers the entire offseason. Most people, including your AFC North blogger, wrote off Pittsburgh, which had to play a quarter of the season without its franchise quarterback. But Tomlin masterfully coached the Steelers to a 3-1 record which catapulted the team's Super Bowl run.

Despite falling one scoring drive short of the title, last season was Tomlin's best coaching job, in my opinion. He won the Super Bowl following the 2008 season. But Tomlin's resolve through extreme circumstances in 2010 cemented his status as one of the league's top coaches.

The Steelers do not botch coaching hires. Chuck Noll, Cowher and Tomlin are the only three people to hold that position in Pittsburgh since 1969. In just four seasons, Tomlin is already on the fast track to filling those huge shoes left by his predecessors.

ESPN.com's coaching Power Rankings

1. Bill Belichick, Patriots

2. Mike Tomlin, Steelers

3. Andy Reid, Eagles

4. Mike McCarthy, Packers

5. Sean Payton, Saints

6. Tom Coughlin, Giants

7. Rex Ryan, Jets

8. Lovie Smith, Bears

9. Mike Smith, Falcons

10. (tie) John Harbaugh, Ravens; Mike Shanahan, Redskins

Walker's coaching Power Rankings

1. Bill Belichick, Patriots

2. Mike Tomlin, Steelers

3. Andy Reid, Eagles

4. Mike McCarthy, Packers

5. Sean Payton, Saints

6. Tom Coughlin, Giants

7. Mike Shanahan, Redskins

8. John Harbaugh, Ravens

9. Rex Ryan, Jets

10. Jim Caldwell, Colts

Here's for many more successful seasons :drink:

mesaSteeler
04-05-2011, 08:35 PM
Thanks for posting. Please don't forget to add the URL when posting an article. Here is the URL for this one.
http://espn.go.com/blog/nflnation/post/_/id/39085/thoughts-on-mike-tomlins-rapid-ascension

Curtain_of_Steel
04-06-2011, 08:53 AM
1 and 2 are most deserving.

McCarthy, Smith and Coughlin and 3 of the most overrated coaches out there. McCarthy is still glowing in the SB win that our Offense gave them. But to say he is 4th? No way. Once you drop past the first 2 its pointless to have any true discussion as most are one time or flash in the pants coaches.

#58
04-06-2011, 09:07 AM
1 and 2 are most deserving.

McCarthy, Smith and Coughlin and 3 of the most overrated coaches out there. McCarthy is still glowing in the SB win that our Offense gave them. But to say he is 4th? No way. Once you drop past the first 2 its pointless to have any true discussion as most are one time or flash in the pants coaches.

Huh? Our Offense gave them? That was a team loss thru and thru.

Our offense turned the ball over and our defense couldn't get a stop when it mattered OR hold them to 3 after the turnovers.

The defense did not play well in the SB.

steelerchad
04-06-2011, 09:29 AM
Huh? Our Offense gave them? That was a team loss thru and thru.

Our offense turned the ball over and our defense couldn't get a stop when it mattered OR hold them to 3 after the turnovers.

The defense did not play well in the SB.

Sure was a team loss. Defense didn't force a single turnover either. With all the mistakes in that game, with 4 minutes left on 3rd and 10 down 3, if we get a stop there we win that game.

It's amazing how tough it is to get 10 really good coaches on a list. The life expentancy is so short, it's hard to get a good read on the ability of a coach. Rex? 2 years. What about Caldwell? 2 playoff appearances, 1 SB appearance. He's got Payton, but that team was painfully thin everywhere else and they again won the division.

harts
04-10-2011, 12:37 AM
Team loss
But like Tomlin said
Green Bay won that game
Steelers didnt lose it