The Pittsburgh Steelers’ offense is undergoing a major overhaul in every way imaginable. New offensive coordinator, new offensive line staff, new quarterbacks coach, new tight end coach and even almost an entirely new offensive line.
Despite those changes, new coordinator Matt Canada, who spoke to the media for the first time this past week during mandatory minicamp, has seen great strides made from his offensive front. That includes his coaching staff as well.
“I feel great about the strides our offensive line is making.” Canada said. “[Adrian] Klemm and Coach Morgan have done a great job with that unit. Obviously, we’ve got some change, there’s no doubt about that. When you talk about the guys with [Maurkice] Pouncey leaving, just the history he has had here and the tremendous player and leader, I’m obviously a huge Pouncey fan. We have to find and fill those roles.”
Suggesting the holes the Steelers have to fill along the offensive line are just the one vacated by Maurkice Pouncey is putting it lightly. The Steelers will be without starters Alejandro Villanueva (left tackle), Matt Feiler (left guard), Pouncey (center) and moving their starting right tackle, Chukwuma Okorafor, to left tackle.
Talk about an overhaul, but it isn’t just the roster which is having an overhaul, so is the mindset. The mindset of running the ball and being aggressive in doing so. Something that wasn’t just Canada’s thought, but came from the top. I mean the way top with Art Rooney II.
“But I think up front, the mindset of what we are trying to do, again the charge from Mr. Rooney to be more physical, to run the football as an offensive lineman, you are going to like that.” Canada added. “We are going to come off the ball and we are going to do that. That doesn’t mean we are going to run the ball a million times or anything like that. But giving them an opportunity to be more aggressive.”
All in all, Canada has been extremely pleased with the work ethic and dedication of the offensive line. Across the board.
“All the way across the board, guys are working really hard. Because of the situation, we haven’t gone against our defense at all yet, so that will be interesting with Minicamp. And there will be some growing pains as we all know. But to get to go up against our defensive line every day makes us better and I feel really good about where the product will be in the fall when it matters.”
With the conclusion of minicamp on Thursday, the Steelers won’t reconvene until they report to training camp. At this time, no one knows where training camp will be held, but the hope is the team will return to Saint Vincent College in Latrobe, PA at the end of July. Either way, the Steelers’ offensive line will dictate the success, or failure, of the offense in 2021.
Be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the black and gold as they prepare for the 2021 regular season.