The Pittsburgh Steelers announced they are not renewing the contract of offensive coordinator Todd Haley and are expected to hire quarterbacks coach Randy Fichtner to replace him.
Haley served as offensive coordinator of the Steelers starting in 2012. He grew up in the Pittsburgh suburb of Upper Saint Clair, and his father was the Steelers’ former personnel director.
Tomlin issued the statement: “I have made the decision to not renew the contract for offensive coordinator Todd Haley. I would like to thank Todd for his contributions to our offense the past six years, and we wish him the best in his coaching future.”
Haley replaced Bruce Arians in 2012 because team management wanted to change quarterback Ben Roethlisber and the offense from a deep-passing attack to an attack the featured quick throws. They were concerned Roethlisberger was getting hit too much and wanted to preserve his career.
Roethlisberger went from being one of the most sacked quarterbacks in the league to being one of the least sacked. In 2017 he was sacked 23 times, one of the fewest in the league. The offense finished 3rd in yards per game this past season and was in the top 10 in each of the past four seasons.
So why would they get rid of a coach of an offense that was so successful? One reason was the Steelers always had trouble scoring in the red zone. Another problem was not being effective in short yardage downs. The biggest reason was that he didn’t get along with Ben Roethlisberger. Over the years Ben always made remarks critical of Haley. Whenever a play didn’t work out, he would make a passive-aggressive remark about the play-calling. Whenever a play worked, Ben would take the credit.
Things got worse this season as reports surfaced of growing tension behind the scenes. After the 2016 season, Ben stated he was contemplating retirement and took months to make a decision. After this season, he quickly stated he was coming back. It would not surprise me if he made a power play and demanded Haley be gone.