View Full Version : Haley: Bold move, worth the risk

02-07-2012, 05:58 AM
Haley: Bold move, worth the risk
Tuesday, 07 February 2012 00:30
Written by Bob Smizik

On Jan. 12, I wrote the following about Ben Roethlisberger and his need for a new offensive coordinator. This was before Bruce Arians was replaced.

``Roethlisberger doesn’t need a friend, a father or an uncle as his offensive coordinator. He needs a boss. Not a tyrant, but someone to lead him to a better place. Arians is not capable, because of the long-standing close relationship, of altering Roethlisberger’s style.’’

And this: ``. . . they need a coach with a different mentality -- not necessarily in philosophy, but in style -- than Arians. They need someone to come in, take over and show Roethlisberger there’s a different way, a better way to play quarterback.’’

I did not mention Todd Haley as someone who might be that man. Wish I had because by most accounts, the Steelers are set to name Haley, an Upper St. Clair High graduate who never played high school or college football, as their new offensive coordinator.

This is not the normal Steelers way. Of course, neither was the removal of Arians. This could be sensational. This could blow up in their face. I'm leaning toward the former.

Haley is said to be combative, egotistical and generally not easy to deal with. But Mike Tomlin has heard all the stories, has sat down face-to-face with Haley and knows what he’s getting. Haley comes highly recommended. Ken Whisenhunt was willing to hire him. Bill Parcells was willing to hire him. Those are two pretty good recommendations.

Haley didn’t get where he’s been -- an NFL offensive coordinator at Arizona and a head coach at Kansas City -- by being impossible to deal with.

When I wrote the article in question, I was chided by some who maintained not only would Roethlisberger not be willing to change his ways but the Steelers would not even be willing to present the challenge.

If Haley is the new offensive coordinator, the challenge has been placed in front of Roethlisberger.

This isn’t to suggest Haley is going to come in and make demands on Roethlisberger, the $100 million quarterback. Vince Lombardi might have coached that way but no one does today. Haley is a smart guy who desperately wants to win. He will fully understand that he cannot make an enemy of Roethlisberger. Nor, however, can he make him a buddy.

He has to set up a coach-player relationship that will work. He can’t order Roethlisberger to tweak his game, but he can show him how subtle changes can make him a better quarterback and the Steelers a better team.

Pay no attention to Haley’s record. He’s not the head coach here. Pay no attention to the offensive numbers his team accumulated. He’ll be working with different athletes.

If he’s as smart as people say he is, he’ll adapt to the talent at hand. And, yes, that means an attempt to build a complete offense but with clear-cut deference to the passing game.

Roethlisberger is the key to success for the Steelers This is a bold move. It might not work. It’s worth the attempt.

02-07-2012, 06:12 AM
Couldn't agree more. What the Steelers offense needs is a change of mentality instead of philosophy. Haley can bring that. He's a passing OC so I'm not really worry about Ben.

Ricco Suavez
02-07-2012, 04:18 PM

If he’s as smart as people say he is, he’ll adapt to the talent at hand. And, yes, that means an attempt to build a complete offense but with clear-cut deference to the passing game.

We can only hope.:tt02:

02-07-2012, 04:42 PM
He'll get a shot and if it don't look like its a win win then Kirby Wilson could be well enough to assume the role...I believe thats who the stiller really wanted to be the OC.