Bill Cowher once had three straight non-playoff seasons yet retained his job as head coach of the Pittsburgh Steelers and later won a Super Bowl. In six seasons as Cowher’s replacement, Mike Tomlin has made the playoffs four times and has advanced to two Super Bowls, winning one.
What Cowher and Tomlin have in common though are tough, ‘never-should-have-happened’ losses in the playoffs. For Cowher, he was able to persevere and eventually get the Super Bowl title that had eluded him for so long. In Tomlin’s case, he won a title in just his second year and that is where things begin to change between the two head coaches.
It’s arguable that both men inherited good talent when they took over the Steelers although I will always believe Tomlin’s was a little better. But now the real test begins in earnest for Mike Tomlin and that is to replace aging and over-priced veterans with young talent that can produce immediately.
I’m not suggesting that another playoff-less season will mean the e...