Originally posted on Bleed Black & Gold  |  Last updated 2/7/12

The Steelers have a new offensive coordinator to replace Bruce Arians.  It is former Chiefs Head Coach Todd Haley.  Haley was brought in for an interview on Tuesday.  Many around league circles thought this was just as a courtesy to his father Dick Haley who used to be the Steelers Director of Player Personnel.  They thought it was to help Haley garner some interest from other teams to help him get a job.  I hoped differently.  I am in the minority here but I am a Haley fan and have hoped for this hire since Bruce Arians was “retired.”

Haley is a fiery man who sometimes has it out with his players.  He has had visible spats with receivers Anquan Boldin and Terrell Owens on the sidelines.  Who hasn’t had a verbal spat with Owens as one of his coaches.  It rubs some fans and media members the wrong way and they shy away from him.  Labeling him a hot head and an @** hole.  I love the fire he shows.  I love the discipline he gives.

Haley has put together some really good offenses.  While with the Chiefs he took a team with very little talent and made them the number one rushing offense in the NFL in 2010.  His offense took some big hits this year as both Jamaal Charles and Matt Cassel missed significant time with injuries.  Charles went from the second leading rusher in the NFL with 1,467 yards and a 6.4 yard per carry average to getting hurt in the first game of the 2011 season.  In that game Charles had run for 89 yards on 12 carries.  He was averaging 6.9 yards per carry when he went down.

Haley has also been the leader of a great passing game.  When with the Cardinals Haley brought Kurt Warner back to life after a few dismal seasons.  Warner went from being benched and cut in New York to almost leading his team to a Super Bowl victory against the Steelers.  His offense in Arizona was high flying.  The Cardinals were second in the league in passing and fifth in total offense.  They also ranked sixth in first downs over that time.  That means they ran a ball control offense even while keeping the ball in the air.

Haley has adapted to what he has had everywhere he has gone.  If the team was built to run then he has run.  If the team was built to pass then Haley threw the ball.  He uses his players to the best of their ability and gets results from it.  He has a great offensive mind and is a good situational play caller which is something Steelers fans have been waiting for since Arians was horrible at it.

You hear about how Haley had Fitzgerald in Arizona and Charles in Kansas City. And?  In Pittsburgh he will have Mike Wallace, Antonio Brown, Heath Miller, Rashard Mendenhall, Emmauel Sanders and Ben Roethlisberger.  He will have the most talent he has ever had to work with.  That talent is not one dimensional either.  Mendenhall if he runs hard is right around the same level as Charles.  Brown, Wallace and Sanders are a better trio then Fitzgerald, Boldin and Breaston.  Add to that he has Heath Miller.  He has weapons and he has used his weapons well in other places.

Another thing you have to add to this is that Haley runs a version of the Steelers offense.  The Steelers have not changed their offense since Ken Whisenhunt left.  It has been tweaked but it is the same system.  Haley was running Coach Whiz’s offense in Arizona and took it with him to Kansas City.  He has his own plays and does his own thing but most of the terminology should be the same thing that Roethlisberger has been running his whole career.  It should make the transition smooth from Arians to Haley at least as a play caller.  Haley also prefers to pass which should make Roethlisberger even more happy.

I like the Todd Haley hire.  I have wanted it from the beginning.  I can not wait to see what he does with this offense next year.


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