Throughout the COVID-19 outbreak within the Baltimore Ravens’ organization, the Pittsburgh Steelers had issues of their own. Several players were put on the Reserve/COVID-19 List, and two coaches were told they couldn’t be on the sideline due to an illness.
The NFL doesn’t require the same transparency with coaches as they do with players, but if fans were thinking the loss of Matt Canada, quarterbacks coach, and Danny Smith, special teams coordinator, would play a role in Week 12, I have good news for you.
Just a day after Canada was cleared to be on the sideline and coach vs. the Ravens, Wednesday Smith was also cleared and will be on the sideline for the 3:40 p.m. ET kickoff at Heinz Field.
With every delay of this game fans of the black and gold were frustrated with the entire process. When it was thought the Ravens who started their outbreak would be cleared to play it cause anger and rage to run through Steelers Nation. However, the same delays have kept the Steelers’ coaching staff in tact.
Will Canada and Smith being on the field make a difference? That depends on who you are talking to. Some will suggest Canada is a pseudo offensive coordinator, and his absence on the sideline would not just leave more responsibilities to Randy Fichtner, but also leave Ben Roethlisberger without a trusted set of eyes diagnosing plays on the sideline.
Smith, who is a coordinator, certainly will be a welcome sight for Steelers’ special team units as they continue to improve as the season progresses. When playing against a depleted Baltimore Ravens roster, the special teams have to be prepared for anything. Onside kickoffs, fake punts and plenty of different pressures on the kicking units.
Be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the black and gold as they prepare for the Ravens on Wednesday afternoon.