The Indianapolis Colts have fired their offensive coordinator, and Pittsburgh Steelers fans want Matt Canada to be next in line to lose his job.
Just before the NFL trade deadline, a frenzy of moves were being made. Surprisingly, the Steelers even got in on the action as the shipped away Chase Claypool for a second-round pick and acquired CB William Jackson from the Commanders. However, some moves around the league had nothing to do with the deadline.
On Tuesday morning, the Indianapolis Colts fired offensive coordinator, Marcus Brady. The Colts’ OC was in his fifth season with Indianapolis and it was his second as the team’s OC. This decision comes after the team went just 3-4-1 entering Week 9 of the 2022 season.
With the Colts’ decision to move on from their offensive coordinator, Pittsburgh Steelers fans have a right to wonder whether or not Matt Canada could be next. Fans have certainly been calling for his firing all season long, and Pittsburgh’s offense has been pathetic.
In fact, when stacked up against the Colts so far this season, there’s really no debate: the Steelers have the worst offense in the league by a mile. Here are their current offensive stats compared to the Colts, according to Team Rankings:
It’s hard to argue against the statistics here. In fact, they don’t even tell quite how bad things have been for Pittsburgh. In 2022, this team has actually scored just 14.2 offensive points per game (a defensive touchdown by Minkah Fitzpatrick makes this look just a bit better than it is). Additionally, they are averaging just 13.2 points per game when rookie QB Kenny Pickett has been on the field.
Steelers have no reason not to fire Matt Canada
In every other profession, if you aren’t performing up to snuff, you’ll lose your job. It should be no different with Matt Canada right now. Most of us would agree that he’s the worst in the league at what he does and that the Steelers would benefit from his departure. This can be hard to do when he’s been with the organization for a few years and is probably friends with Mike Tomlin, but business decisions must be made for a billion-dollar franchise like this.
Sadly, I don’t see things getting any better at all until Pittsburgh decides to make a switch at offensive coordinator. Canada’s offense is so stale and bland that it allows for almost no splash plays and yards after the catch. As a result, Pickett is dead last in the NFL in yards per attempt and adjusted yards per attempt. Simply put, this offense has zero upside, and scoring 20 points is an absolute chore that isn’t easily attainable.
Entering a bye week, Mike Tomlin and company has two weeks to prepare for their next matchup against the Saints. If they waste no time finding an interim OC, this should be enough time for the offense to start getting acclimated to a new playbook. It doesn’t have to be anything crazy; just get Pickett some plays he’s really comfortable with and have receivers work the middle of the field.
If they were to make a switch, this would likely come in the form of quarterback coach, Mike Sullivan. During the 2023 offseason, the Steelers could look for a more permanent solution.
Don’t expect the Steelers to fire him unit the offseason
Matt Canada has one more year on his contract, and while I don’t believe he will be back in 2023, I also don’t believe the Steelers will part ways with him before the end of the season. Mike Tomlin is here to win football games and he probably doesn’t want to deal with a move that is this extreme during the middle of the season without a great candidate in place.
The team might also have Kenny Pickett in mind, as they don’t want him to have yet another offensive coordinator over the past several years going back to his college days (though we know that it doesn’t get much worse than this). The time to do so would have been the day after the Eagles game, but that time has not come and gone. I wouldn’t be expecting a move at this point, though it’s what all fans want.
There might not be any viable long-term options out there right now, but as you can see, other teams are willing to make the tough business choices like this. The Pittsburgh Steelers need to follow suit.