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Steelers5895
03-26-2013, 09:36 AM
With all the posts I have been reading about how great Cowher was and how Tomlin isnt a great coach but walked into a great situation, I felt the need to post this.

Bill Cowher was one of the best coaches of his era but was NOT a great coach. He too was handed a great situation and he was made to look great because the Steelers let him work through the tough seasons while other organizations fired there coaches. So, when most coaches were getting canned 2-3 years in, Cowher being there 10+ right away everyone assumes....GREAT Coach.

lets keep this in mind. Again, Cowher was a good coach, but not great.

1- He inherited a GREAT nucleus of players drafted by Chuck Noll. Players such as Woodson, Lloyd, Lake, O Donnell, Dawson, Foster, Eric Green, JOhn Jackson, Gerald Williams, Nickerson, Ernie Mills, DJ Williams, Meril Hoge. Lots of Starters throughout the beginning of Cowhers coaching era

2- Cowher had his share of high draft busts- Deon Figure (rs 1) , Jermaine Stephens, RD 1, Steve Conley rd 3, Will Blackwell- rd 2, Paul Wiggins, rd 3, Jeremy Stat- rd 2, Chris Conrad- rd 3, Troy Edwards- rd 1, Scott Shields, rd 2, Alonzo Jackson- rd 2.

the issue with these busts were they were needed to replace Pro Bowlers and players Noll left Cowher.

3- Terrible Record in big games. he lost 4 AFC Championship games at home as the favorite.

4- 1-1 in Super Bowls and had over 10 year span between Super Bowls

5- 12-9 in the playoffs when most were home games.

6- 3 years in a row not making playoffs

7- 10 of 15 years in playoffs..Good...One Super Bowl win...not good for that many chances

Look, I like Cowher, he was a good coach, he was a motvator and tough but he wasnt exactly what I would call a GREAT coach.

he rode Chuck Nolls great ability to draft and find talent and could not get that team a championship with 5 playoff appearances. When those players fazed out and he brought in his players they had a bad stretch and I have seen coaches make the playoffs with less talent than he had.

glad he was our coach as I am Tomlin is, but to say Cowher is that much better than Tomlin is crazy.

The_Joker
03-26-2013, 09:48 AM
I'll never forgive the '95 Super Bowl meltdown... and I didn't even exist yet!

Overall, he was a good coach, but damn he choked alot.

harrison'samonster
03-26-2013, 09:53 AM
I'll never forgive the '95 Super Bowl meltdown... and I didn't even exist yet!

Overall, he was a good coach, but damn he choked alot.

we had that 95 SB, against a team we weren't suppose to be able to beat. that wasn't Cowher's fault.

I agree, Cowher wasn't a great coach, although I loved having him on the sidelines. I do miss the fire, there aren't many coaches who have matched that.

Steelers5895
03-26-2013, 09:58 AM
we had that 95 SB, against a team we weren't suppose to be able to beat. that wasn't Cowher's fault.

I agree, Cowher wasn't a great coach, although I loved having him on the sidelines. I do miss the fire, there aren't many coaches who have matched that.

I still have yet to get over the 95 Super Bowl. we dominated and won the game BUT didnt score more points. I dont blame O Donnell, I think the injury to Ernie Mills hurt them. We had to use inexperienced receivers who werent where they were supposed to be.

As for Cowher, his fire and toughness tends to get people thinking he was a great coach. he was a great motivator and fun to watch on the sidelines. But in a big game, i would take Tomlin. 2-0 in AFC Championship games.

ebsteelers
03-26-2013, 10:12 AM
as the staying goes... the grass is always greener on the other side.

When we had the Jaw people wanted more, now we got a 2-0 in afc title games coach, and we want the jaw..

Never gonna be perfect but Steeler fans are awfully spoiled. Tomlin is a top coach in the game, and plenty of teams would love to have him coaching for them.

harrison'samonster
03-26-2013, 10:15 AM
When we had the Jaw people wanted more, now we got a 2-0 in afc title games coach, and we want the jaw..



that's a good point. Every time we came close, people wanted Cowher run out of town. I guess we're always going to get people over-reacting about our HC

steeltheone
03-26-2013, 10:35 AM
The Steelers prior season records before Cowher took over were 5-11, 9-7, 9-7, 7-9 Hardly a " set " team

Cowher lost AFC Championships to eventual SB Champs in Patriots 2x and Denver with Hall of Fame QB Elway and Brady.

Lost the Superbowl to a Legendary team in The Dallas Cowboys. Very well could have won it.

Cowher probably would have at least 3 rings with BR7 at QB ( he got 1 with him)

Tomlin got the job done against flacco's and Sanchez and a weak Cardinals team. I have trouble seeing a Tomlin team beating a team with a HOF QB in January.

JackH
03-26-2013, 10:37 AM
And Chuck Noll is the guy most responsible for the Steelers drafting Gabriel Rivera instead of Dan Marino with their first pick of the 1983 draft, the way I hear the story.

In my opinion, the Steelers have been blessed with outstanding coaches, outstanding ownership, and outstanding players. For the most part. There are always bumps in the road. The 6 Lombardi Trophies are real sweet.

And then there is the Cleveland Browns.

A discussion about whether Cowher or Tomlin is a better coach is like the one about Bradshaw vs. Ben. Damn good, both of them.

Steelers5895
03-26-2013, 11:14 AM
The Steelers prior season records before Cowher took over were 5-11, 9-7, 9-7, 7-9 Hardly a " set " team

Cowher lost AFC Championships to eventual SB Champs in Patriots 2x and Denver with Hall of Fame QB Elway and Brady.

Lost the Superbowl to a Legendary team in The Dallas Cowboys. Very well could have won it.

Cowher probably would have at least 3 rings with BR7 at QB ( he got 1 with him)

Tomlin got the job done against flacco's and Sanchez and a weak Cardinals team. I have trouble seeing a Tomlin team beating a team with a HOF QB in January.

You forgot Stan Humphries and Tom Brady wasnt Tom Brady yet in one of those. Great coaches find a way to win those games.

he inherited a team full of talent as did Tomlin.

the thing is when fans rip Tomlin they keep saying Cowher this and Cowher that. It was Cowhers team , Cowher would have done this. what they forget are the major pitfalls of the Cowher Era.

Not winning a super bowl with the team he had early/mid 90's was a travesty

Vis
03-26-2013, 12:08 PM
I'll never forgive the '95 Super Bowl meltdown... and I didn't even exist yet!

Overall, he was a good coach, but damn he choked alot.


Thanks for making me feel old

BowCatShot
03-26-2013, 12:11 PM
"And Chuck Noll is the guy most responsible for the Steelers drafting Gabriel Rivera instead of Dan Marino with their first pick of the 1983 draft, the way I hear the story."

Who could have predicted that Rivera would get paralyzed in an auto accident? I think Noll made the right decision. Everybody except Shula thought Marino was a drughead.

CrickRat23
03-26-2013, 12:12 PM
I think the Steelers have been blessed with the three coaches they have had over the past several decades. All three were, and are, what the Pittsburgh Steelers are all about. ( Toughness and grit, and family ). I would not have wanted it any other way.

Are there times we wish we had somebody else coaching our Steelers? Sure there is. But when it comes down to it, We had three pretty good guys here.

fansince'76
03-26-2013, 12:24 PM
Cowher probably would have at least 3 rings with BR7 at QB ( he got 1 with him).

Yes, a horribly-played game that pretty much everybody besides Steelers fans think was a gift from the refs. Fact is, he came up small repeatedly in big games. His team should have wiped the floor with the '94 Chargers and should have done the same with that '01 Patriots team. Brady was NOBODY in 2001 and to add insult to injury, Brady got knocked out of that game and Bledsoe won it for them. Hell, if it were left up to Cowher, we would've wound up with Shawn Andrews in 2004 and we'd still be stuck on Lombardi #4. Thank God it wasn't.

I have trouble seeing a Tomlin team beating a team with a HOF QB in January.

Well, since the prevailing "wisdom" is that Tomlin has done it all with "Cowher's players," logic dictates so would Cowher, no?

JackH
03-26-2013, 12:30 PM
"And Chuck Noll is the guy most responsible for the Steelers drafting Gabriel Rivera instead of Dan Marino with their first pick of the 1983 draft, the way I hear the story."

Who could have predicted that Rivera would get paralyzed in an auto accident? I think Noll made the right decision. Everybody except Shula thought Marino was a drughead.

Yeah, right. How many more Lombardi Trophies do you think the Steelers would have if Marino would have been QB instead of guys named Bubby?

FanSince72
03-26-2013, 12:36 PM
Cowher = Martyball

Good defensive coach
Timid offensive coach

Overall, Bill Cowher was a good coach but not a great coach. He was too stubborn for his own good (or for the good of the team) and he played scared.

I didn't care for his devotion to his pet project (Kordell) or the fact that when it was obvious to everyone else that the whole "Slash" thing wasn't working, Cowher refused to give up on his boy and I think that cost us some opportunities. I also didn't care for the way he treated Mike Tomczak during that time -- allowing him to march the offense down the field for 70 yards or so and get us into scoring position and then yanking him out so that Kordell could play the hero. That, I believe, did a lot to kill morale and a consistent offense.

I also blame Cowher for turning Ben into little more than a quivering mass of protoplasm before SB 40 by spending two weeks preparing Ben "Not to lose".

Ben was curving upward during that whole playoff run and put on a clinic by the time he got to Denver for the AFCC and then in just two weeks, I believe Cowher had Ben second and triple guessing himself to the point where he was questioning his ability to tie his own shoes -- all because Cowher was scared to death of losing another SB.

I've said this before, but my "evidence" for this is summed up in an NFL Films clip from SB40 where Ben says to Cowher: "Coach, let's play to win...let's not play not to lose, OK?"

When a second-year QB says that to a 14-year Head Coach, something is definitely wrong.

I think Cowher had the right idea in many ways - in terms of personnel, game plan and so on, but I just think that he lacked the sack to really pull it off with authority and as a result, he never truly allowed the teams he had to fully realize their potential.

I know a lot of guys LOVE Cowher...I guess I'm just not one of them.

steeltheone
03-26-2013, 02:09 PM
You forgot Stan Humphries and Tom Brady wasnt Tom Brady yet in one of those. Great coaches find a way to win those games.

he inherited a team full of talent as did Tomlin.

the thing is when fans rip Tomlin they keep saying Cowher this and Cowher that. It was Cowhers team , Cowher would have done this. what they forget are the major pitfalls of the Cowher Era.

Not winning a super bowl with the team he had early/mid 90's was a travesty

The Steelers prior season records before Cowher took over were 5-11, 9-7, 9-7, 7-9 Hardly a " set " team

Very rarely do teams win Superbowls with bad QB'S

steeltheone
03-26-2013, 02:14 PM
Cowher = Martyball

Good defensive coach
Timid offensive coach

Overall, Bill Cowher was a good coach but not a great coach. He was too stubborn for his own good (or for the good of the team) and he played scared.

I didn't care for his devotion to his pet project (Kordell) or the fact that when it was obvious to everyone else that the whole "Slash" thing wasn't working, Cowher refused to give up on his boy and I think that cost us some opportunities. I also didn't care for the way he treated Mike Tomczak during that time -- allowing him to march the offense down the field for 70 yards or so and get us into scoring position and then yanking him out so that Kordell could play the hero. That, I believe, did a lot to kill morale and a consistent offense.

I also blame Cowher for turning Ben into little more than a quivering mass of protoplasm before SB 40 by spending two weeks preparing Ben "Not to lose".

Ben was curving upward during that whole playoff run and put on a clinic by the time he got to Denver for the AFCC and then in just two weeks, I believe Cowher had Ben second and triple guessing himself to the point where he was questioning his ability to tie his own shoes -- all because Cowher was scared to death of losing another SB.

I've said this before, but my "evidence" for this is summed up in an NFL Films clip from SB40 where Ben says to Cowher: "Coach, let's play to win...let's not play not to lose, OK?"

When a second-year QB says that to a 14-year Head Coach, something is definitely wrong.

I think Cowher had the right idea in many ways - in terms of personnel, game plan and so on, but I just think that he lacked the sack to really pull it off with authority and as a result, he never truly allowed the teams he had to fully realize their potential.

I know a lot of guys LOVE Cowher...I guess I'm just not one of them.

2nd year QB is the key to that statement. BR7 was on his way, but not yet a franchise QB.

steeltheone
03-26-2013, 02:24 PM
Yes, a horribly-played game that pretty much everybody besides Steelers fans think was a gift from the refs. Fact is, he came up small repeatedly in big games. His team should have wiped the floor with the '94 Chargers and should have done the same with that '01 Patriots team. Brady was NOBODY in 2001 and to add insult to injury, Brady got knocked out of that game and Bledsoe won it for them. Hell, if it were left up to Cowher, we would've wound up with Shawn Andrews in 2004 and we'd still be stuck on Lombardi #4. Thank God it wasn't.



Well, since the prevailing "wisdom" is that Tomlin has done it all with "Cowher's players," logic dictates so would Cowher, no?

The Patriots were the champions that year, i believe they were a team of destiny.

I was at that game. We could have won. Kordell was not a gamer.

The Charger game should have been won. But we would have gotten beat in the big game by another legendary team in the 49ers and a HOF QB in Steve Young.

Cowher did great things with a no QB team. I would like to see the present coach with Gradkowski and Batch at the controls.

steeltheone
03-26-2013, 02:28 PM
I want it to be known i don't hate Coach Tomlin or think he should be canned. I like what Cowher brought to the team. Like Tomlin not a great x's and o's guy but Cowher was a super motivator and conveyed toughness throughout the team.

Our team has become very soft. Starts at the top.

Steelers5895
03-26-2013, 02:38 PM
The Steelers prior season records before Cowher took over were 5-11, 9-7, 9-7, 7-9 Hardly a " set " team

Very rarely do teams win Superbowls with bad QB'S

Trent Dilfer, Rob Johnson, Jeff Hostetler,

O donnell was not a bad QB. The talent level Cowher received far exceeded what Tomlin got from Cowher.

LVSteelersfan
03-26-2013, 02:40 PM
One sentence shoots Cowher down as a great coach in my mind. Bill Cowher insisted that Kordell Stewart was a starting calibre NFL Quarterback. He was not good. Couldn't throw the ball in the ocean if it was 10 yards in front of him. How many seasons were totally wasted trying to make him a pocket passer. What a waste of time and it forever tarnishes Cowher's legacy in my mind.

RavenManiac
03-26-2013, 02:47 PM
"Surprise onsides," ftw!

Cowher was more often let down by his QB and STs. The buck stops with him, but some of those playoff losses were fluky.

ebsteelers
03-26-2013, 03:00 PM
The Steelers prior season records before Cowher took over were 5-11, 9-7, 9-7, 7-9 Hardly a " set " team

Cowher lost AFC Championships to eventual SB Champs in Patriots 2x and Denver with Hall of Fame QB Elway and Brady.

Lost the Superbowl to a Legendary team in The Dallas Cowboys. Very well could have won it.

Cowher probably would have at least 3 rings with BR7 at QB ( he got 1 with him)

Tomlin got the job done against flacco's and Sanchez and a weak Cardinals team. I have trouble seeing a Tomlin team beating a team with a HOF QB in January.

so now he is getting knocked down cause of the teams he faced?

is it tomlins fault the sanchise lead the jets over the pats?

or that the cardinals with warner fitz and boldin won the afc?

or that flacco led his team to the afc championship game?

also those teams earned their chance and tomlin led teams beat them. clearly jersey joe has earned his stripes through the years. and the cardinals team had its struggles but was still very good offensively..

Seems like where just reaching for negativity

end of the day, the grass is always greener, and we were let down with cowher and we've had our struggles with tomlin.

Tomlin is still young though, and I am sure he will continue to learn as his career advances.

FanSince72
03-26-2013, 03:04 PM
2nd year QB is the key to that statement. BR7 was on his way, but not yet a franchise QB.

So you're saying that because BR was a 2nd year player he couldn't tell the difference between playing scared and playing aggressively? Or that he had no credibility in pointing it out?

Ben may not have been a franchise QB yet, but he was certainly headed that way and in that particular season he was getting better by the week and then came SB40 and he suddenly looked like some 3rd string backup.

I really don't believe that BR was suddenly overwhelmed by the moment.
What I DO believe is that two weeks of listening to Cowher explain Martyball is what changed him and BECAUSE he was just a 2nd year QB, all he could do was say, "Yes coach" when what he really wanted to do was tell Cowher to grow a pair.

harrison'samonster
03-26-2013, 03:05 PM
so now he is getting knocked down cause of the teams he faced?

is it tomlins fault the sanchise lead the jets over the pats?

or that the cardinals with warner fitz and boldin won the afc?

or that flacco led his team to the afc championship game?

also those teams earned their chance and tomlin led teams beat them. clearly jersey joe has earned his stripes through the years. and the cardinals team had its struggles but was still very good offensively..

Seems like where just reaching for negativity

end of the day, the grass is always greener, and we were let down with cowher and we've had our struggles with tomlin.

Tomlin is still young though, and I am sure he will continue to learn as his career advances.

Cardinals were playing great that post-season. I don't really want to compare Tomlin and Cowher myself, but they did have at least one thing in common, neither were perfect.

teegre
03-26-2013, 03:18 PM
Cowher was great. His fatal flaw: he thought that he could with WITHOUT a franchise QB.

He passed on Brees, Pennington, and wanted to pass on BB. His defenses were amazing, and his running game was outstanding. If he had picked up Drew Brees, the Steelers would have two more Lombardis: 2001 & 2004 (that's not a knock on BB; it's just that Brees would have been more savvy than BB was as a rookie, and in turn, Brees would not have thrown three INTs in the 2004 play-offs. And, 2001 should be obvious: Add Drew Brees, subtract Kordell Stewart, and shake with a healthy does of a healhty Kendrell Bell. Voila!!!... Lombardi).

Tomlin beat Kurt Warner... who is a HOFer... and an MVP. Plus, they had Larry Fitzgerald in his prime. That's easily just as good as beating -er- losing to Elway in 1997. That point (about the Cardinals) makes no sense to me.

I'll never forgive a certain QB for being paid off (to throw those awful INTs) in XXX. THAT is not on Cowher; Cowher won that game... but, his QB took the money & ran.

Lastly, and most importantly, it always seems that it is an "either/or" situation when it comes ot Cowher & Tomlin (& to a dgeree, Noll). People seem to feel that it is either Cowher is great or Tomlin is great... but... I feel that they BOTH were/are amazing coaches.

Oh, and I do recall usernames such as: CowherSux, KillCowher, and DieCowherDie being extremely prevalent in the late 90s & early 2000s.

steeltheone
03-26-2013, 03:20 PM
"Surprise onsides," ftw!

Cowher was more often let down by his QB and STs. The buck stops with him, but some of those playoff losses were fluky.

We have had Special Teams problems for years...The buck does stop with the HC.

steeltheone
03-26-2013, 03:29 PM
Trent Dilfer, Rob Johnson, Jeff Hostetler,

O donnell was not a bad QB. The talent level Cowher received far exceeded what Tomlin got from Cowher.

Are you kidding me? Tomlin got a team 1 year removed from a Super Bowl Victory...34 wins the 3 prior seasons.

Cowher got a 5 then 9,9 and 7 win team the previous 4 years.

O'Donnell was a good QB... They lost to a legendary Cowboys team

MasterOfPuppets
03-26-2013, 03:53 PM
every game that kordell was the starting qb , made me dislike cowher more.

SH-Rock
03-26-2013, 04:46 PM
The Patriots were the champions that year, i believe they were a team of destiny.

I was at that game. We could have won. Kordell was not a gamer.

The Charger game should have been won. But we would have gotten beat in the big game by another legendary team in the 49ers and a HOF QB in Steve Young.

Cowher did great things with a no QB team. I would like to see the present coach with Gradkowski and Batch at the controls.

It's a different era now with QBs and their high powered offenses leading the way. No way the 2000s ravens could win the super bowl again with trent dilfer at helm in todays age so what makes you think cowher would succeed in today's age as well? Defense doesn't win championships anymore.

SH-Rock
03-26-2013, 04:50 PM
Are you kidding me? Tomlin got a team 1 year removed from a Super Bowl Victory...34 wins the 3 prior seasons.

Cowher got a 5 then 9,9 and 7 win team the previous 4 years.

O'Donnell was a good QB... They lost to a legendary Cowboys team

Great players don't win superbowls. It takes great coaches to win or even get to one. Look at the Chiefs this year, 6 pro bowlers and they're picking first in the draft. The team Tomlin inherited had a plethora of talent, but utilizing that talent is a whole other ball game. 2008 season was a brutal season, but the Steelers got it done, why? because of the coaching staff. The 2010 season started off without Ben yet we still made it to the Super Bowl. Also look at the 2010 Packers and 2011 Giants. Both teams were hit hard by injuries and many coaches would've crashed and burned in that season, but it takes a great coach to battle adversity and win it all.

Steeldude
03-26-2013, 05:17 PM
every game that kordell was the starting qb , made me dislike cowher more.

It's not like Cowher wanted him. His hand was forced.

tony hipchest
03-26-2013, 05:19 PM
The Steelers prior season records before Cowher took over were 5-11, 9-7, 9-7, 7-9 Hardly a " set " team

Cowher lost AFC Championships to eventual SB Champs in Patriots 2x and Denver with Hall of Fame QB Elway and Brady.

Lost the Superbowl to a Legendary team in The Dallas Cowboys. Very well could have won it.

Cowher probably would have at least 3 rings with BR7 at QB ( he got 1 with him)

Tomlin got the job done against flacco's and Sanchez and a weak Cardinals team. I have trouble seeing a Tomlin team beating a team with a HOF QB in January.while i agree with almost all of this, kurt warner is very much in the discussion as a HOF worthy player and had a season or 2 as good as any qb in nfl history (earning league and SB MVP awards).

tomlin very much had a hand in james harrisons 99 int return and the caravan that led him down the field and enabled him to score. that was all coaching that is documented on "Americas Game 2008 Steelers"

steeltheone
03-26-2013, 05:22 PM
Great players don't win superbowls. It takes great coaches to win or even get to one. Look at the Chiefs this year, 6 pro bowlers and they're picking first in the draft. The team Tomlin inherited had a plethora of talent, but utilizing that talent is a whole other ball game. 2008 season was a brutal season, but the Steelers got it done, why? because of the coaching staff. The 2010 season started off without Ben yet we still made it to the Super Bowl. Also look at the 2010 Packers and 2011 Giants. Both teams were hit hard by injuries and many coaches would've crashed and burned in that season, but it takes a great coach to battle adversity and win it all.

You just proved my point...Noll had average records with the " Great Talent " you said Cowher inherited, Cowher made them successful

Cowher won a SB with a 2nd year QB that went on to slap his head of the Pittsburgh pavement the next year on a motorcycle.

Tomlin took over and did a great job with a championship team just as George Seifert and Barry Switzer did.

Mike Tomlin did some great things the last several years with the adversity he faced. He has also been very average in many other areas.

Tomlin will carve his legacy in the next few years. I hope it works out, but i have my doubts.

steeltheone
03-26-2013, 05:26 PM
while i agree with almost all of this, kurt warner is very much in the discussion as a HOF worthy player and had a season or 2 as good as any qb in nfl history (earning league and SB MVP awards).

tomlin very much had a hand in james harrisons 99 int return and the caravan that led him down the field and enabled him to score. that was all coaching that is documented on "Americas Game 2008 Steelers"

Tony I'm not a fan of many opposing players, but i liked Kurt Warner and Fitz is the best ( Go Pitt ) They were Warner and Fitz away from a very average team.

Bottom line we won and i'm super glad!:tt03:

steeltheone
03-26-2013, 05:28 PM
It's a different era now with QBs and their high powered offenses leading the way. No way the 2000s ravens could win the super bowl again with trent dilfer at helm in todays age so what makes you think cowher would succeed in today's age as well? Defense doesn't win championships anymore.

Cowher drafted Ben and had a fierce defense. I'm thinking thats the ticket!

Hawaii 5-0
03-26-2013, 05:40 PM
Cowher drafted Ben and had a fierce defense. I'm thinking thats the ticket!

Cowher didn't draft Ben, fact is he wanted to draft OT Shawn Andrews from Arkansas and thankfully was overruled by the Rooneys.

NSMaster56
03-26-2013, 05:52 PM
Lots of good discussion here.

It's an interesting topic to consider, albeit also difficult. Honestly, there's no objective answer as to which coach is 'better'. The only objective thing here is that both are/were good coaches.

If we're going to compare though, it should be noted that both coaches had/have similar overall philosophies on the field. As someone said, both are 'Marty ball' coaches; Cowher because he had no QB and Tomlin because he has no RB/OL.

Outside of that the obvious contrast is their style of player relations, with Cowher's 'motivational skills' vs. Tomlin's 'laissez faire' approach.

A few point/counterpoints to consider:
1. While Cowher had his fair share of capable coordinators on both sides of the ball, he only had an Ace like LeBeau in 95/96 (made SB) and not again until 2004 (coincidentally the same year Big Ben arrived).
2. Cowher got the most out of what he had, regardless of what it was (talent-wise), but Tomlin got his best to be the best (whereas Cowher's best always came up short until 2005).
3. Tomlin may have a more 'impressive' playoff resume (only 2 losses---not counting the SB), but it's because his teams 'choke' BEFORE the playoffs. That is, when they fail, they fail to even make the playoffs.
4. Despite the difference in their postseason records, both Cowher's and Tomlin's playoff losses came with their fair share of *'s (slew of freak ST TD's and banged up Bettis in 01 and the 'roughing the kicker' penalty in 03 vs. no Fast Willie in 07). That said, their most egregious losses were equally shameful (94 Chargers and 11 Broncos).

All this being said, it's folly to compare the two overall as of yet since Tomlin is only 1/2 way to Cowher's longevity and we're only just starting to see how he will handle a team 'all his own'. In three years when Ben is the only 'Cowher Steeler' left, we'll have a better idea of how to properly compare/contrast the two great coaches.

Lastly, one funny thing to consider about #1 above is Cowher's record with/without LeBeau and Tomlin's with him.

COWHER-DL: 94-65-1 (.5875) w/ 3 AFCCG apps
COWHER+DL: 55-25 (.6875) w/ 2 SB apps, 1 AFCCG app
TOMLIN: 63-33 (.65625) w/ 2 SB apps

You'll notice that Cowher's record (and 'hardware') with DL is roughly similar to Tomlin's (only one 8-8 season from matching). This is probably not mere coincidence.

So anyways, the definitive [not at all shocking] conclusion here might be that the real 'GREAT' coach of the Steelers is Dick LeBeau. 87-47 (.649) since his arrival in 04, with 3 SB trips and 2 wins (and 108-68 (.614) in all his years as DC, with 4 SB trips and 2 wins). Kind of speaks for itself.

tony hipchest
03-26-2013, 06:31 PM
we see plenty of "poor" coaches who get their one shot in the nfl and fizzle away.

steve spurrier
cam cameron
dennis ericson
les miles? (im thinking of the joker cycle and home wrecker, for atlanta who quit)
eric mangini.

there are a handful of good coaches every year in any given year.

norv turner
marty shottenheimer.
dan reeves was a damn good coach.

i think great coaches are defined by their accomplishments and subsequent longevity. The NFL simply wont let a poor coach stick around for much more than 5 years. a good coach only has a bit longer shelf life of maybe 10 years.

jeff fisher and andy reid can be considered blarderline "great" coaches when compared to their peers. joe gibbs, bill parcells, and even marv levy who never won it all are all great coaches. bill walsh was the greatest amongst his peers, but it doesnt mean the others were only "good".

by my definition bill cowher was a great coach and his career and accomlishments bore that out and arent diminished by his failures just like marv levy's arent.

tomlin is in the process of becomming a great coach. he can probably coach as long as don schula if he so desires. it may or may not be with the steelers.

bill belichick is the greatest coach amongst his peers, but it doesnt diminish the value of all the others. its just sets the bar that much higher.

Blacksburg Zach
03-26-2013, 06:37 PM
we see plenty of "poor" coaches who get their one shot in the nfl and fizzle away.

steve spurrier
cam cameron
dennis ericson
les miles? (im thinking of the joker cycle and home wrecker, for atlanta who quit)
eric mangini.

there are a handful of good coaches every year in any given year.

norv turner
marty shottenheimer.
dan reeves was a damn good coach.

i think great coaches are defined by their accomplishments and subsequent longevity. The NFL simply wont let a poor coach stick around for much more than 5 years. a good coach only has a bit longer shelf life of maybe 10 years.

jeff fisher and andy reid can be considered blarderline "great" coaches when compared to their peers. joe gibbs, bill parcells, and even marv levy who never won it all are all great coaches. bill walsh was the greatest amongst his peers, but it doesnt mean the others were only "good".

by my definition bill cowher was a great coach and his career and accomlishments bore that out and arent diminished by his failures just like marv levy's arent.

tomlin is in the process of becomming a great coach. he can probably coach as long as don schula if he so desires. it may or may not be with the steelers.

bill belichick is the greatest coach amongst his peers, but it doesnt diminish the value of all the others. its just sets the bar that much higher.

I believe that was Bobby Petrino.

jb500ex
03-26-2013, 06:41 PM
Yes, a horribly-played game that pretty much everybody besides Steelers fans think was a gift from the refs. Fact is, he came up small repeatedly in big games. His team should have wiped the floor with the '94 Chargers and should have done the same with that '01 Patriots team. Brady was NOBODY in 2001 and to add insult to injury, Brady got knocked out of that game and Bledsoe won it for them. Hell, if it were left up to Cowher, we would've wound up with Shawn Andrews in 2004 and we'd still be stuck on Lombardi #4. Thank God it wasn't.



Well, since the prevailing "wisdom" is that Tomlin has done it all with "Cowher's players," logic dictates so would Cowher, no?

Did you see the horrible job Tomlin did second half against the cards where he completely shut the team down br saved his ass. Or did you see the horrendous job he did against the pack that was one of the worst coaches games I've ever seen. I can wait to see where you guys are on Tomlin in 10 years when he's out of the league

Blacksburg Zach
03-26-2013, 06:57 PM
Did you see the horrible job Tomlin did second half against the cards where he completely shut the team down br saved his ass. Or did you see the horrendous job he did against the pack that was one of the worst coaches games I've ever seen. I can wait to see where you guys are on Tomlin in 10 years when he's out of the league

So you want him to fail just so you can prove a point? Your irrational hatred of Mike Tomlin is so great that you want him, and the team, to fail just so you can say that you were right? That's sad.

NSMaster56
03-26-2013, 07:08 PM
You had me until...

there are a handful of good coaches every year in any given year.

norv turner

Wait, what?! DOES. NOT. COMPUTE. :chuckle:

Steelers5895
03-26-2013, 07:38 PM
This post wasn't comparing cowher and Tomlin it was to remind the cowher lovers of his shortcomings.

micraydim
03-27-2013, 03:47 AM
amazing 95 Super Bowl and great coach.

bornaSteelersfan
03-27-2013, 04:41 AM
The passion that Cowher had for his team and the game of football is rarely seen in a coach. I truly miss the way he would yell at players spewing spit in their faces. I also miss the joy he had when the team and players did well. Cowher commanded respect through fear of getting called out. It made the guys always dig deep to improve their play.

On the other hand, Tomlin commands respect through his diplomacy and understanding of the game. He has nowhere near the passion Cowher had. He will give the players plenty of opportunities to prove themselves and when they don't, they get yanked from the game. There is no yelling and certainly no spit. It shows the players that he trusts them to meet their potential, but when they fail, they will get punished.

I enjoy both of them equally and think they are both great coaches even if they are not the best ever.

ebsteelers
03-27-2013, 08:20 AM
Did you see the horrible job Tomlin did second half against the cards where he completely shut the team down br saved his ass. Or did you see the horrendous job he did against the pack that was one of the worst coaches games I've ever seen. I can wait to see where you guys are on Tomlin in 10 years when he's out of the league

wait wait wait just a second.


Tomlin threw those picks?

Tomlin fumbled the rock?

Tomlin was covering the Packer wide outs?


o okay just checking

you sound like a real big Steeler fan wishing the coach is out of the league in 10 years... :rofl:

ebsteelers
03-27-2013, 08:22 AM
QUOTE=BlacksburgSteeler13;1096261]So you want him to fail just so you can prove a point? Your irrational hatred of Mike Tomlin is so great that you want him, and the team, to fail just so you can say that you were right? That's sad.[/QUOTE]

well said,

some Steeler fan they are..

:rofl:



Not saying Tomlin is perfect but he is the coach now and will ride with him till the wheels fall off.

:tt04::tt04::tt04::tt04::tt04::tt04::tt04::tt04:

patsfaninpittsburgh
03-27-2013, 09:41 AM
With all the posts I have been reading about how great Cowher was and how Tomlin isnt a great coach but walked into a great situation, I felt the need to post this.

Bill Cowher was one of the best coaches of his era but was NOT a great coach. He too was handed a great situation and he was made to look great because the Steelers let him work through the tough seasons while other organizations fired there coaches. So, when most coaches were getting canned 2-3 years in, Cowher being there 10+ right away everyone assumes....GREAT Coach.

lets keep this in mind. Again, Cowher was a good coach, but not great.

1- He inherited a GREAT nucleus of players drafted by Chuck Noll. Players such as Woodson, Lloyd, Lake, O Donnell, Dawson, Foster, Eric Green, JOhn Jackson, Gerald Williams, Nickerson, Ernie Mills, DJ Williams, Meril Hoge. Lots of Starters throughout the beginning of Cowhers coaching era

2- Cowher had his share of high draft busts- Deon Figure (rs 1) , Jermaine Stephens, RD 1, Steve Conley rd 3, Will Blackwell- rd 2, Paul Wiggins, rd 3, Jeremy Stat- rd 2, Chris Conrad- rd 3, Troy Edwards- rd 1, Scott Shields, rd 2, Alonzo Jackson- rd 2.

the issue with these busts were they were needed to replace Pro Bowlers and players Noll left Cowher.

3- Terrible Record in big games. he lost 4 AFC Championship games at home as the favorite.

4- 1-1 in Super Bowls and had over 10 year span between Super Bowls

5- 12-9 in the playoffs when most were home games.

6- 3 years in a row not making playoffs

7- 10 of 15 years in playoffs..Good...One Super Bowl win...not good for that many chances

Look, I like Cowher, he was a good coach, he was a motvator and tough but he wasnt exactly what I would call a GREAT coach.

he rode Chuck Nolls great ability to draft and find talent and could not get that team a championship with 5 playoff appearances. When those players fazed out and he brought in his players they had a bad stretch and I have seen coaches make the playoffs with less talent than he had.

glad he was our coach as I am Tomlin is, but to say Cowher is that much better than Tomlin is crazy.

Had free agency existed in the 1970's, history might very well have ended very differently.

Point 7 is the most important in the free agency era with Cowher being the first coach of the era.

The reality is that with free agency, "great" coaches should be judged based on the opportunities the coach provides to win it all.

Cowher was very consistent in that respect.(Ofcourse, winning one helps)

In reality, who actually wins tends be to artitrary. How else can one explain that the previous year's SB champion has not won a playoff game since 2004-5?

VaDave
03-27-2013, 09:45 AM
The most important thing a coach can bring to the table is a system where players can thrive. A lot of BS gets hurled at LeBeau, but the fact is, his D is effective. Not only game to game, or throughout the season, but transcending, season after season, decade after decade, with different teams, various players with different skill sets, and talent levels,.

So far I am encouraged by what Haley is bringing to the table, as it looks like a workable system. Although there is still a lot of BA's work evident, the play calling as well as down an distance management is much better.

Which brings us to Tomlin. Just like the QB gets too much credit for either loss or victory, so does the head coach. Yeah, he's responsible for it all, but really, his main job is to make sure his coaches have a system to thrive.

Tomlin IMO embraces this to the nth degree, which may be the reason for the perceived detachment he displays from time to time. I'm also going to go out on a limb in saying nobody would want to be in the coaches room debrief after a loss, or a bonehead play happens.

As for Tomlin's in game management, I guess, most of those posters were not around or slept through the Noll era. Noll was NOT a good in game manager either. He was totally convinced that his game plan properly executed, using techniques he taught, could not fail, and the players believed it.

As for ALL of you talking negatives about Noll, Cowher, and Tomlin, let me remind you, the Steelers did play football prior to 1969. You all would have loved Bill Austin, Walt Keisling, Buddy Parker........

desertsteel
03-27-2013, 11:18 AM
The Steelers prior season records before Cowher took over were 5-11, 9-7, 9-7, 7-9 Hardly a " set " team

Cowher lost AFC Championships to eventual SB Champs in Patriots 2x and Denver with Hall of Fame QB Elway and Brady.

Lost the Superbowl to a Legendary team in The Dallas Cowboys. Very well could have won it.

Cowher probably would have at least 3 rings with BR7 at QB ( he got 1 with him)

Tomlin got the job done against flacco's and Sanchez and a weak Cardinals team. I have trouble seeing a Tomlin team beating a team with a HOF QB in January.

Kurt Warner will be in the HOF.

Steeler7BR
03-27-2013, 01:58 PM
Kurt Warner will be in the HOF.

I don't think so, just too inconsistent.

lipps83
03-27-2013, 04:06 PM
You just proved my point...Noll had average records with the " Great Talent " you said Cowher inherited, Cowher made them successful

I think this statement right here gets overlooked far too often. Same thing happened with Jim Harbaugh and the 49'ers. Yes, a lot of the players on the team were drafted before he got there, but more than half were your average starter in the league before he arrived. Coaches are there to get the most out of a player and put them in situations they know they will succeed in.

Cowher made a lot of those players what they were. Lake was just another no-name starter in the league until Cowher and Capers came around. After Cowher he became Carnell Lake the perennial Pro Bowler.

Same with a lot of the other players the OP named.

Heck, Barry Foster was a backup until Cowher came onboard.

Cowher was also smart enough to know that Bubby Brister was the 1st coming of Bubby Brister, so he played O'Donnell from the get go. Yeah, I know Noll benched him in the 91 season, but I just wanted to say that.

And please stop mentioning Deion "Seven" Figures as a bust. He was SHOT in the KNEE (that part of the lower body that is important to play football) after a solid rookie season. He still had a decent career on a bum knee. Some people have short memory.

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1006937/

Millers the sh!t
03-27-2013, 04:22 PM
Cower was on the line of greatness. He was consistent as shit and his formula worked and will always work in this league. If he wasn't fucked out of two afccg by the pats and didn't lose his steam at the end of his career the man just may of had 3 more rings. Wed all be singing a different tune. There would be no conversation except for him possibly being the Greatest Coach in modern football.

teegre
03-27-2013, 04:29 PM
Cower was on the line of greatness. He was consistent as shit and his formula worked and will always work in this league. If he wasn't fucked out of two afccg by the pats and didn't lose his steam at the end of his career the man just may of had 3 more rings. Wed all be singing a different tune. There would be no conversation except for him possibly being the Greatest Coach in modern football.

I hate the Taperiots.

I hate XXX.

I hate 1994.

Aside from those three things, I was happy with Cowher.

Alsteel
03-27-2013, 05:36 PM
The only thing i will get down on him about is the 4 AFC championships lost at HOME.
Thanks for bringing up those bad memories.

Fire Arians
03-28-2013, 12:29 AM
I didn't care for his devotion to his pet project (Kordell) or the fact that when it was obvious to everyone else that the whole "Slash" thing wasn't working, Cowher refused to give up on his boy and I think that cost us some opportunities. I also didn't care for the way he treated Mike Tomczak during that time -- allowing him to march the offense down the field for 70 yards or so and get us into scoring position and then yanking him out so that Kordell could play the hero. That, I believe, did a lot to kill morale and a consistent offense.

I disagree somewhat, the "Slash" thing was GENIUS! That is, when he played qb/wr/rb, and you had no idea what the guy was gonna do, but he made plays. He was such a great athlete that other teams had no choice but to account for him. DB's couldn't cover this guy, not even ours could in practice reportedly.

Now, transforming "Slash" into a fulltime QB was a mistake, Kordell should have made his career out of being "Slash" and who knows, he could have been a hall of famer. He had the talent to be a great WR/RB, and was a decent QB. He could have been a DC's worst nightmare. coulda woulda shoulda, dude should have swallowed his pride and realized he was a great athlete but not a great qb.

Slash is what the jets tried to do with tebow but they epic failed at that. kordell > tebow by miles though

teegre
03-28-2013, 12:32 AM
I disagree somewhat, the "Slash" thing was GENIUS! That is, when he played qb/wr/rb, and you had no idea what the guy was gonna do, but he made plays. He was such a great athlete that other teams had no choice but to account for him. DB's couldn't cover this guy, not even ours could in practice reportedly.

Now, transforming "Slash" into a fulltime QB was a mistake, Kordell should have made his career out of being "Slash" and who knows, he could have been a hall of famer. He had the talent to be a great WR/RB, and was a decent QB. He could have been a DC's worst nightmare. coulda woulda shoulda, dude should have swallowed his pride and realized he was a great athlete but not a great qb.

He went from EVERY Steelers fan's favorite player to one of their least favorite ever.

He had the world in his hands... and threw it right at Bill Romanowski.

pczach
03-28-2013, 05:29 AM
Cowher had his flaws. Mostly the playoff losses at home with the better teams. That being said, I feel very fortunate to have had him as the coach of the Steelers for as long as he was here. Let's face it. He was a Qb away from being the dominant force in the NFL for many years. That isn't entirely his fault. The front office and scouts could never find him a top tier QB until Ben. He has talked about it after he left the Steelers. How he would have loved to take his chances with a veteran Ben as his QB. He knows he would have won a couple more if he had him earlier, or had stayed for a number of years more with Ben pulling the trigger.

The NFL has turned into a league where the Qb position is the most important piece of a team's success or failure. Any team can scheme to take away the running game. Let's face it, that's what happened to Cowher's teams many years. If you can throw and run, you've become very hard to defend. A great QB would have changed all that.

FanSince72
03-28-2013, 08:38 AM
I disagree somewhat, the "Slash" thing was GENIUS! That is, when he played qb/wr/rb, and you had no idea what the guy was gonna do, but he made plays. He was such a great athlete that other teams had no choice but to account for him. DB's couldn't cover this guy, not even ours could in practice reportedly.

Now, transforming "Slash" into a fulltime QB was a mistake, Kordell should have made his career out of being "Slash" and who knows, he could have been a hall of famer. He had the talent to be a great WR/RB, and was a decent QB. He could have been a DC's worst nightmare. coulda woulda shoulda, dude should have swallowed his pride and realized he was a great athlete but not a great qb.

Slash is what the jets tried to do with tebow but they epic failed at that. kordell > tebow by miles though

Good point and I agree that trying to make Kordell a full time QB was a mistake - or rather THE mistake.

Look, Cowher had passion and he stood behind his players and encouraged them to succeed but it always comes back to the Martyball thing.
Cowher was simply too cautious when it came to big games or big moments and he usually "settled" when he should have been attacking. He just never seemed comfortable with finishing off an opponent and it was as if he felt self conscious about doing so unlike our #1 nemesis - New England where Belichick never seemed to have any problem sticking the knife into US when the opportunity presented itself.

Let's put it this way: If Cowher had Belichick's killer instinct he would have been a perfect coach (and probably would have racked up multiple SB wins too).

Steelers5895
03-28-2013, 05:29 PM
Kordell as a quarterback was a great idea. Trying to make kordell a pocket passer was a bad idea and a waste of talent. Now, the perfect storm was keeping kordell in the pocket while taking away his weapons each and every year. Oh and let's not forget the revolving door of oc's.

zcoop
03-28-2013, 05:55 PM
Kordell as a quarterback was a great idea. Trying to make kordell a pocket passer was a bad idea and a waste of talent. Now, the perfect storm was keeping kordell in the pocket while taking away his weapons each and every year. Oh and let's not forget the revolving door of oc's.

^This X2!

They tried to make Kordell into something that took away from his positive attributes. This has been done to many mobile QBs and set them up for failure. Its the opposite of trying to make a pocket QB do mobile QB things. That shit don't work very well.

And the OC revolving door is a point that I raised in a previous discussion about Kordell here on this board.

teegre
03-28-2013, 06:11 PM
^This X2!

They tried to make Kordell into something that took away from his positive attributes. This has been done to many mobile QBs and set them up for failure. Its the opposite of trying to make a pocket QB do mobile QB things. That shit don't work very well.

And the OC revolving door is a point that I raised in a previous discussion about Kordell here on this board.

Ray Sherman ruined Kordell. Any chance that Kordell had of being successful in the NFL was obliterated by Ray Sherman.

Chan Gailey had Kordell heading in the right direction, and more importantly, used Kordell's strengths. "If it's not there, run... really fast... and if someone gets in your way... turn."

OX1947
03-28-2013, 07:59 PM
15 years
Coach of the Year
8 Division titles
2 AFC titles
1 World title
161 wins plus playoffs
Greatest closer in NFL history

He did most of that with Kordell and O'donnell as his Qbs. Give Cowher Big Ben in his first year like Belichick had Brady, and tell me then how many titles Cowher would have had.

FrancoLambert
03-31-2013, 08:13 PM
Fair assessment.

It' hard to overlook the playoff games lost at home.

micraydim
04-01-2013, 07:42 AM
Mike Tomlin was great in the last several years with the adversity he faced. he was also average in other areas.