Steelers Fire OC Matt Canada, QB Coach Mike “Sully” Sullivan To Take Over Play-Calling Duties
Published by: Bear Acuda
Embattled offensive coordinator Matt Canada was fired early Tuesday morning by the Pittsburgh Steelers. Since Tuesday was a late start for players & coaches, most of them found out through text messages & social media.
If it wasn’t already abundantly clear by my all-caps & exclamation point, I vehemently agree with this decision. I, like many in the Burgh, have been screaming for another option at play-caller. The usual haters showed up on X, but the cries for Canada’s firing reached a crescendo when citizens went as far as purchasing a billboard begging for Canada’s canning.
Canada’s scheme managed to make our QB God Ben Roethlisberger look mediocre in his final season, seemingly aiding his decision to retire before Steeler Nation was ready to say goodbye.
Now granted, there would’ve never been a good day for us to bid farewell to our 5-Star General, but getting rolled by a Baker Mayfield led Cleveland Browns the final two games of the 2020 season (one of which was a blowout loss in the first round of the NFL Playoffs) in addition to another first round knockout the next season (thank you, Kansas City Chiefs) was not how we would’ve imagined saying goodbye.
Pittsburgh Steelers QB Kenny Pickett first learned of Matt Canada’s dismissal on his lone day to catch up on sleep. Pickett awoke around 8:30 in the morning to a barrage of notifications informing him of the departure of his offensive coordinator. When asked for his reaction to the news, Pickett had this to say:
“Got the news when everybody else got the news. You hate to see it. You don’t want to see one of your coaches lose their job. We all gotta be better. Called coach, wished him well, we had a good conversation, gotta bounce back quickly and get ready to go for Cincy.”
Pickett’s regression this season was one of the major factors leading to the firing, but he learned quickly that the NFL is a business first. Pickett had to swiftly move forward, with the team spending around 15 minutes to address the situation before refocusing their attention on the upcoming game against the Bengals. Presently, the offensive reins are in the hands of running back coach Eddie Faulkner, who is stepping in as the offensive coordinator, while quarterback coach Mike Sullivan is assuming play-calling duties.
Pickett emphasized that there will be no alterations to the team’s terminology, and there won’t be any “wholesale changes” to the offense in the foreseeable future. Instead, the primary goal is to reignite the spark that was missing in the offense, the very reason for Canada’s departure. Following the firing of his offensive coordinator, Pickett has taken it upon himself to personally lead the charge in revitalizing the offense.
“It’s a challenge to everybody. I think you have to take it personal, it’s a guy you worked with since I got drafted here. You want to play great, you don’t want to see anybody get let go like that.”
We’ll see if words can translate to results. Only time will tell.
The first test will be our matchup with the Bengals in “The Jungle.” It’s a division game, and with all the massive injuries inflicted upon our AFC North rivals, we are still in a good position to creep up on the Baltimore Ravens for the Division Title.
All that will be a moot point should we drop our first post-Canada game. So it’s up to the leaders of the Steelers to earn their paycheck.