The Steelers mantra has been pushed to the limit. How much more can it take?
When I say that the Steelers mantra, ‘The standard is the standard’, has been pushed to the limit what I mean by that is this: The 2022 season was trying on many levels. It started out poorly but improved steadily over the course of the season.
While we finished the season with a winning record, 2022 was yet another season without a playoff appearance. There was a time when making the playoffs was an expectation rather than an exception. Let’s see how the mantra has been pushed to the limit on the offensive side of the ball.
The Steelers offense steadily improved in 2022 but still has significant room for improvement
Since Matt Canada has been the offensive coordinator, the Steelers have finished no better than twenty-third in total offense. According to ESPN, in 2021 and 2022, we ranked twenty-third on the nose. In other words, there was no improvement from year one to year two.
If the standard is winning, one could argue that we are fulfilling that standard as we have never had a losing season since Mike Tomlin has been the head coach. Don’t get me wrong, I am proud of the fact that the Steelers have not had a losing season since Tomlin took over the reins in 2007.
Conversely, if the standard is winning and competing for a Lombardi Trophy, only one part of that equation has been satisfied. As I have stated in previous discussions, Tomlin has to make a change at offensive coordinator. I don’t know why finishing twenty-third in total offense for two consecutive seasons is acceptable. Perhaps a change is on the horizon.
If a change is not forthcoming, think about the message we would be sending to our young and upcoming players, such as Kenny Pickett, George Pickens, and Pat Freiermuth. Essentially, we would be telling them that despite the fact that you represent our offensive future, it’s OK to finish ranked twenty-third for two seasons in a row.
Let’s see how the mantra has been pushed to the limit on the defensive side of the ball.