When you miss the playoffs the year after winning the Super Bowl, you know there is something wrong. I am not usually the one to quickly jump all over the coach for poor direction and management. Most of the time, I see the problems inherent in the poor execution of the players themselves. The Steelers this year changed my view point on all of that and now we are finally seeing the results.
In the latest in a series of firings, special teams coordinator, Bob Ligeshesky, was sacked. This years ST had the worst performance that I have ever seen by a coverage unit. They allowed four kick returns for TDs in five games and finished the regular season 24th in punt coverage and 30th in kick coverage. They allowed 9.8 yards per return on punts and 24.3 on kick offs. That is horridly awful and deserves to be buried in the forgotten season grave yard. I wonder what Bobby April is doing right now?
Offensive line coach, Larry Zierlein, was already fired earlier this week. This was a given, considering Big Ben spends more time on his back than Tawny Kitaen in a Whitesnake video. He is one of the most sacked quarterbacks in the league because of the Swiss Curtain offensive line. Not to mention, the one time running back bastion of a Steeler's backfield has declined over the last two years because the line can't block or cut a hole for running room.
On top of that, Ken Anderson, Steelers QB coach decided to retire after 40 years in the NFL. Some fans may remember Ken as the QB for the Bengals from 71-86. He held the single season completion rate record until Brees broke it this year. Roethlisberger has flourished under Coach Anderson over the past three years, setting the Steelers single season TD record in 2007 and throwing for over 4,000 yards this year.
I'm sure the firings aren't done yet. If only Arians would part ways. But alas, he is back for another year of Air Arians football. Good luck to us. For those non-Steeler fans, check out this open letter to Brucey by maryrose over at Behind the Steel Curtain. I think it sums up a great deal of frustrations Steeler Nation has with Mr. Arians.