If there was any question as to whether or not Matt Canada will be implementing new philosophies for the Steelers offense, they can be put to rest.
Taking questions from the Pittsburgh media on Wednesday, Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert addressed the change in philosophy with the hiring of Matt Canada as their new offensive coordinator. According to Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Colbert admitted they will have to look differently as they evaluate players to be the best fit for the Steelers moving forward.
Colbert said Matt Canada's college-style offense could force the Steelers to evaluate players such as wide receivers, running backs, even quarterbacks, differently. "We will be looking at different players differently than what we currently have."— Gerry Dulac (@gerrydulac) February 17, 2021
When Matt Canada was promoted from quarterbacks coach to offensive coordinator earlier this offseason, some Steelers’ fans felt an internal promotion would simply give more of the same. With Canada only having one season under his belt in the NFL, it was difficult to say if his philosophies were going to take center stage right away with the Steelers. Based on Colbert‘s comments, the Steelers did not promote Canada to simply run the same system they were previously using and are looking for his fingerprints to be all over the offense in 2021.
So in what ways will the Steelers have to look differently at personnel in Matt Canada‘s offense? Do the players they have on the roster work or will they be looking to fill specific needs moving forward?
To better answer this question, I solicited the help of BTSC’s Geoffrey Benedict. According to Geoffrey, he believes the requirements for different positions in Canada’s offense are as follows:
Offensive line: Awareness and processing.
Tight end: Versatility to play in backfield and out wide.
Wide receiver: Play every receiver position plus run the ball.
Running back: Vision.
Quarterback: Ability to follow the system.
Specifically in Colbert’s quote, he addressed the need to have the proper personnel at both wide receiver and running back. It was also interesting that Colbert threw in quarterback as a position where they will have to look differently as he also had very interesting comments when it came to Ben Roethlisberger’s future with the Steelers in 2021.
Between struggling to rush the football as well as the ability to push the ball down the field in 2020, it appears the Steelers offense will look quite different this coming season regardless of if they have similar personnel. Whether or not the Steelers will be able to hit the ground running with this new offense is what all Steelers’ fans are waiting to see this fall. Until then, it will be interesting to see how the Steelers fill out their roster both through free agency and the NFL draft and what this will mean to their offense moving forward.