As the end of the 2012 campaign nears for the Pittsburgh Steelers, it is time to start dissecting what went wrong this season and peer into what the future might hold. One area where the team should be set moving forward is on the coaching staff; at least at the coordinator positions.Dick LeBeau, who at 75 years old, show no signs of slowing down. While the number of sacks and turnovers continue to drop, the stout nature of the defense is not in question; again being the top ranked unit in the NFL. In fact, one might say that the aging defense was the most consistent unit throughout 2012, although, they did have their struggles early in the season.
Offensive coordinator Todd Haley also looks to be returning, although the offense did not show the marked improvement that the franchise had hoped for with the coordinator change last offseason. However, there are mitigating factors with injuries that plagued the offense throughout the second half of 2012, which may come into play when reviewing performance.
The offense was never able to get into a rhythm once quarterback Ben Roethlisberger was injured, even after his return. In fact, as the season moved forward, it almost appeared as if, the team lost their identity while trying to protect Roethlisberger and the inexperienced offensive line that was pieced together after being decimated by injury.
Of course, there will at least one change on the coaching staff as offensive line coach Sean Kugler will be leaving for his new position as head coach at UTEP. Kuglers' work this season was amazing considering the team was down multiple starters on different locations and saw three rookies forced into action by injury. With a lot of young talent, the coach hired to replace Kugler will be critical in the continued development of the offensive line.
One coach that may be in trouble is special teams’ coordinator Amos Jones. Although Jones was one of the first hires to head coach Mike Tomlin’s staff, his units were hit and miss all season. Although, he too has some mitigating circumstance involved that could buy him one more season, as he was thrust into the position when the team parted ways with Al Everest late in training camp.
With only one game remaining, the questions will hit a fever pitch in less than a week. One thing is certain, this will definitely be an interesting offseason for Steelers fans to watch.
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