View Full Version : Steelers stack the deck for new coaches under Tomlin

06-15-2012, 10:22 PM
So this is the third article I've written about the Steelers so far for Examiner.com. I've had the nucleus of the idea for this one floating in my head for a while now, and I finally got around to writing it out. I think (and hope) that many here will find this interesting. It's a trend that I've noticed over the years with Tomlin. Many people have various criticisms about his abilities as a coach, but I think it's hard to deny that one of his great strengths is surrounding himself with quality coaches and allowing them to do their jobs so that he doesn't need to micromanage.

If you have facebook, please take the time to "like" the story and share it, especially if you are friends with a lot of Steelers fans. You can also subscribe to my stories by clicking the subscribe button beneath my name on one of the articles and writing in your email. It will just send you an email whenever I post something, but it helps me out in terms of my pay (which is not much). The more views and shares and stuff, the more I make, so I appreciate every bit. I'm also on twitter: @NFLExaminer. Feel free to share my stories there too if you have a lot of Steelers followers. I write about all NFL teams as well, so if you're interested in league news, I supply that as well. Anyway, here's an excerpt from the article (click the link to read the whole thing - it's in 3 parts):

Steelers stack the deck for new coaches under Tomlin (http://www.examiner.com/article/steelers-stack-the-deck-for-new-coaches-under-tomlin-part-1)

When former Steelers head coach Bill Cowher retired following the 2006 season, new Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin largely inherited an intact team, including the coaching staff. Outside of a few notable departures (in particular offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt and assistant head coach/offensive line coach Russ Grimm), the rookie leader had very little tinkering to do, and what he did was mostly in-house and local.

He promoted wide receivers coach Bruce Arians to offensive coordinator while bringing in Larry Zierlein from Buffalo to coach the offensive line, with whom Tomlin previously worked in the collegiate ranks. He also replaced special teams coach Kevin Spencer (who, along with Whisenhunt and Grimm, left to coach the Arizona Cardinals) with a Pittsburgh native, Bob Ligashesky, while bringing in Amos Jones as a special teams assistant, who had prior connections to numerous coaches on the staff. Tomlin was forced to replace running backs coach Dick Hoak when he retired along with Cowher, replacing him with Kirby Wilson.

A lot of these changes did not work out. In fact, of the above named, only Wilson and Jones remain on the staff. However, the track record of their replacements is rather notable in terms of improving their respective units. As he grew as a coach, Tomlin learned that it is important to stack the deck in favor of his new coaches in order to succeed, and the evidence of such is staggering.

tony hipchest
06-16-2012, 03:07 AM
done and done and done...

nice in depth write up. it was probably a lillte difficult for tomlin to make his 1st 2 firings as deserved as their firings were (zeirlien and shitthebedsky). like in most cases, it isnt always the fault of one person, unless it is arians (who was probably a much easier dismissal on the heels of the first 2.)

06-16-2012, 03:30 AM
Liked, tweeted and +1'd. Keep it up!

06-16-2012, 04:51 PM
Thanks guys.