Tomlin: “We’re extremely excited” about Haley


Mike Tomlin wasn’t expected to speak Thursday as the Steelers introduced offensive coordinator Todd Haley.

Perhaps sensitive to the perception in Pittsburgh that Tomlin didn’t want to hire Haley, the Steelers head coach wound up talking after all.

“Needless to say, we’re extremely excited” about hiring Haley, Tomlin said.

Tomlin didn’t take questions or say a lot more about the direction of the offense.

“We find pleasure in being something of a mystery,” he said.

Haley took over from there and talked about his Pittsburgh roots and excitement about getting the job. He says he’s never “been a system” guy and will mold his offense to the talent of his players. Haley has evidence to back it up: He went from running a very pass-heavy offense in Arizona to a run-heavy offense in Kansas City.

Haley wouldn’t say if there would be an emphasis on running, just on winning. He’s a huge fan of Heath Miller.

Asked about his reputation for being hard to work with, Haley said he learned from his father former Steelers director of player personnel Dick Haley to avoid reading all media. (Which usually means a coach reads a lot of what’s written.) But the younger Haley didn’t deny that he coaches with an edge.

“We’re not into sensitivity,” Haley said.

Haley said he spoke with Tomlin about the job multiple times in various locations around the country. Haley hasn’t yet spoken to Ben Roethlisberger yet, and acknowledged that the transition to an offense isn’t always easy.

“There’s an uncomfortable aspect to newness. But that’s not always a bad thing. It will be a great thing in this case,” Haley said.

34 responses to “Tomlin: “We’re extremely excited” about Haley

  1. “Excited” is one of those words that can go either way, kinda like “spectacular”.

    It can be a spectacular fireworks display, or it can be a spectacular fire.

    Tomlin could be “excited” about Haley in a spectacular kind of way.

  2. This is going to be great for the offense. 60% pass, 40% run. Wallace & Miller have great years. Brown is the 3rd down target, converting into first downs. Roethlisberger’s completion percentage, yards, and touchdowns go up, sacks and interceptions go down.

    So Long BA!

  3. “He says he’s never “been a system” guy and will mold his offense to the talent of his players.”


    I don’t care who hired him and who may or may not have wanted him, the point above alone makes him an upgrade.

  4. Of course you left out where he says Ben is a great player and it will work out, and the fact that Tomlin himself told Haley about how he really likes the young receivers on this team.

    Doesn’t meet your agenda.

  5. Or maybe tomlin had no problem with the hire and pft is just trying to stir things up for a story, wich usually is the case with anything posted here about the steelers. Regardless, I hope this was a good hire and I cant wait to see this new offense this coming season

  6. Skepticism about Tomlin’s thoughts on the hire has already set in, which is unfortunate because I do think that Tomlin and the Rooneys were on the same page for this hire.

    Tomlin’s perceived objections could be just a way to protect the feelings of Fichtner who was presumably passed over for the job (possible), or just a product of sensationalism of Ron Cook – a Pittsburgh writer known for trying to pull a story out of nothing (highly likely).

    Can’t be worse than bubble-screen Bruce though…

  7. In the immortal words of Bart Scott: CAN’T WAIT!!!!!!! Time to bring some HIGH ENERGY to what was a pretty pathetic offense!!!!

    GO STEELERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  8. “Needless to say, we’re extremely excited”

    Translation: “This dick was forced on me by the Rooneys.”

  9. Tomlin would say this no matter what. He is probably the classiest head coach in the lague.

  10. I’m super jacked about this hire and I was also glad to see Arians go. Already excited for the 2012/2013 season. Now all we need is a running back, offensive lineman and cornerbacks. Maybe a decent free agent signing…..I guess I can dream.

  11. You’re gonna have to say you’re excited, otherwise Haley may think you are in the coalition of terror that is against him, then he’ll be watching your every move, knowing that finally, when you strike, he’ll be ready with his considerable munitions, guile, and experience points.

  12. I thought Haley did a respectable job in Dallas, and as shown, he’s capable of running both a pass-heavy and run -heavy offense. Obviously right now passing is Pittsburgh’s strength, so hopefully he tailors the offense accordingly. I’m sure he’ll be more creative than Arians. But no matter what, they’ve gotta shore up that line, or Ben’s gonna get killed.

  13. People don’t seem to understand the Steelers don’t have to be the same team they were 40-50 years ago. A lot of times, change is good. They went against the grain and hired a relatively unknown in Tomlin who went on to establish himself as one of the top coaches in the league.

    Everyone needs to give Haley a chance before they automatically judge this as a bad move. He can do a lot of good for the offense and maybe Ben needs someone who’s not going to be his best friend, and who can push him to become the QB he’s capable of.

  14. “Bill Cannon says: Feb 9, 2012 1:28 PM

    Let all the haters from KC start whining about Haley now.”


    As a Chiefs fan, I will say I have no idea if the mess they found themselves in was Haley, Pioli or Clark Hunt’s fault.

    But beyond all that, I think the Steelers have themselves a really good OC. I always liked Haley. Maybe it just wasn’t going to work in KC, but there are a lot of players here, and in AZ and in many of the other places he’s been, that recognized the good things he’s brought out in players and teams.

    I hope it works out for him.

  15. I LOVE THIS. Tomlin and Haley will be at each other constantly. Ben and Haley will be at each other constantly. I am going to enjoy this big time. Too much ego in one place, and it will show.

  16. I have heard that Haley is difficult to work for/with. With that being said, I say give him a chance and let’s see what happens. Big Ben and BA were probably too close. Perhaps Haley was brought in to push Ben into being “the best he can be” by kicking his butt when need be and teaching him how to best utilize his talents. There is no doubt a change was need at oc – let’s hope Haley is the right guy.

  17. He says he’s never “been a system” guy and will mold his offense to the talent of his players.

    So exactly what was he molding when he decided to start Tyler Palko over Kyle Orton?

    I ain’t sayin….I’m just sayin….

    He is definitely a better OC than an HC. I hope he works out Steeltown but I would not bet money on it.

  18. It’s just interesting that they fire Bruce Arians because they want to revert to a more run heavy offense … and then they hire Haley–a pass happy moron.

  19. @steelerchicken …

    Are you a Ravens fan or a Browns fan? Jerry Jones II? That doesn’t even make sense. Art Rooney II has been running daily operations for the Steelers since 2003; he was instrumental in hiring Tomlin. Since he hasn’t been a meddlesome owner in the last nine years–or in the previous decades when he worked beside his father and prepared to take over the team–there’s no reason to believe he’s doing that now. Jerry Jones serves as the Cowboys’ general manager. Gosh, I wish the people who commented on these threads had a thimble’s worth of knowledge about the sport. 🙄

  20. The most alarming observation can be found within the press conference itself- I havent seen very many teams hold press conferences like that for coordinators- KC did it by teleconference… As a Steelers fan I smell trouble on the horizon and if Haley have his way he will bug the owner’s office until he’s eventually the coach of that team- Tomlin/Big Ben watch your backs.

  21. It’s unfortunate to learn that you Steeler fans don’t like bubble screens.

    Signed, Chiefs fan

  22. @ DGS – they didn’t fire Arians to go to a run-heavy offense. Fail on attempt at snarky.

    @ Westclaims – The Steelers have NEVER tolerated locker room distractions – see Tone, Plax, Faneca and Eric Green. Shouldn’t you be on a Ravens forum?

    @ SteelersChicken – Jerry Jones II? The Steelers aren’t perfect, but they’re universally recognized as among the most stable, well-run (from an owner’s perspective) organization in team sports. The Rooneys almost never meddle – the secret of their success. You REALLY failed.

    @ CannonBallDookie – some good points, but the Steelers’ history shows they ALWAYS hire young, defensive minded, relatively unknown coaches – Noll, Cowher and Tomlin were all little known assistants / coaches, not the “big names” like some owners crave… simply for the headlines.

  23. Or Tomlin was fine with firing Arians and didn’t want to promote from within. And this all being pinned on the Rooneys so that Tomlin can come out looking like a nice guy.

  24. The Steelers hiring Haley was the best thing Chiefs fans could imagine. He is a pox upon any franchise. I can barely wait to see how quickly he runs Pittsburg into the ground.

  25. mrpkg says:
    Feb 9, 2012 1:15 PM
    This is going to be great for the offense. 60% pass, 40% run. Wallace & Miller have great years. Brown is the 3rd down target, converting into first downs. Roethlisberger’s completion percentage, yards, and touchdowns go up, sacks and interceptions go down.

    So Long BA!
    Also- the housing market goes back to peak levels before the downturn, unemployment drops to 5%, Democrats and Republicans work together, and I have sex with Brooklyn Decker.

  26. Nah, frank, she’s not in my fantasy. In fact, neither was he until that Super Bowl ad. And to think, I usually prefer the funny commercials 🙂

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