Report: Steelers hire Todd Haley as offensive coordinator


Todd Haley is following in his father’s footsteps and joining the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Dick Haley played for the Steelers and was their longtime player personnel director and now his son will reportedly be the team’s offensive coordinator. Marc Carman of 610 AM in Kansas City had the initial report on Monday afternoon, which was later corroborated by Chris Mortensen of ESPN. The team has yet to make an official announcement.

When word broke that the Steelers were interviewing Todd Haley for the opening last week, there was some thought that it was simply a courtesy given his father’s long record of service with the organization. That appears to be incorrect with Haley bouncing back from his ouster in Kansas City in a pretty good situation to flex his offensive muscles.

The Steelers parted ways with Bruce Arians last month.  Arians is now the offensive coordinator in Indianapolis. It will be interesting to hear Ben Roethlisberger’s thoughts on the hiring as he was reportedly unhappy with the decision to dump Arians and was believed to support promoting quarterbacks coach Randy Fichtner into the top job so that the offense remained slanted toward the pass.  Haley’s background would indicate a willingness to keep things moving in that direction, which could satisfy any of Roethlisberger’s doubts.

85 responses to “Report: Steelers hire Todd Haley as offensive coordinator

  1. Todd Haley and Big Ben???

    Oil and Water
    Peanuts and Bubble Gum
    Buddy Ryan and Kevin Gilbride
    Lindsay Lohan and O’Douls

    Not gonna work.

  2. Great Hire. Very excited for next season.

    Todd Haley was the OC in Arizona when they went to the Super Bowl with Kurt Warner, Larry Fitz, and Anquan Boldin. I can only imagine what he will do with Big Ben, Mike Wallace, Antonio Brown, and Heath Miller!!!!

    Here we go PITT!!!

  3. Just what this offense needed . Keep everyone accountable for their mistakes . Not go golfing together afterwards .

  4. I don’t know what to think of this hire. In some respects I like it because Haley proved in AZ that he can do some pretty great things with the right weapons. My concern is that his personality is a bit f a departure from the typical stoic personality that steelers maintain

  5. Good news-He will open up the passing game so Wallace and Brown could be in for huge years

    Bad news-Wallace and Brown better not get on his badside or they will see him turn into the turd we all know

  6. The AFC is disintegrating. Peyton is done in Indy, New England won’t draft WRs or pass rushers to help Brady, and big Ben is being saddled with Haley.

    I think the NFC might just win 13 Super Bowls in a row again.

  7. Zeedoubleyou, you can take Warner, Fitz and Boldin all you want. Seems we beat those guys already.

    As for Haley, well, should make for an interesting season! Does seem to me that we needed a little more fire on the sidelines and someone needs to keep Big Ben in check just like Favre needed to be kept in check. When those guys run amok they run aground faster than an Italian cruise line.

  8. What will be really interesting is to see if the Steelers have any plays inside the 15 yard line outside of having 4-5 wides and Ben in shotgun.

    Ya know, maybe play action, maybe some motion, maybe make defense think you could be doing something different.

    Could get crazy. Maybe a 3rd olineman as tight end in motion to run block on snap. Wowwww…….

  9. Not sure what to think about this move. haley is a pretty combative guy. Should be a thrill a minute…

  10. Haley grew up in Pittsburgh and is a nice upgrade over clueless Bruce.

    If he can get the O-Line to play better, and get Ben to get rid of the ball sooner so he doesn’t get hurt every year, the Steelers will be SB contenders in 2012 once again.

    Steelers were the best team in the AFC…until Ben got hurt.

  11. Another step backwards down the stairway to seven, heading towards the basement of the AFC North. Hey at least Ben’s getting a fresh new wingman for trolling the bar scene.

  12. irodex says:
    Feb 6, 2012 5:24 PM

    RIP Steelers Offense
    1933 – 2012

    Good one, but let’s be realistic. Other than one trip to the playoffs in 1947 (a first round loss), the Steelers never even *sniffed* the playoffs until 1972. That’s FORTY YEARS (ok, 39) of ineptitude and constant basement finishes before they finally got their act together. With that in mind, I’d like to amend your comment to say…

    RIP Steelers Offense
    1972 – 2012

  13. Ah, who can tell? Haley’s apparent success in AZ now seems more about Kurt Warner than anything else, and it’s such a mess in KC that it’s hard to get a read on anyone involved.

    Good luck, Steelers. By this time next year you’ll know whether or not it was a good move.

  14. This is fantastic. As a Browns fan, I know that my team cannot beat the Steelers on the field so all we’ve got to root for is destruction from the inside out. I was pretty pumped when Bruce Arians (another Cleveland reject that has gone on to find success) was shown the door and Ben was bent outta shape becasue of it.

    I know, but what are you gonna do? It’s all we’ve got.

  15. How much more will Haley run the ball than Arians. This was the primary complaint from the Rooney’s about the BA offensive scheme.

  16. Love it! Can’t see why people don’t think Big Ben and him won’t be able to work together. The bad press on both of them is more or less unsubstantiated.

  17. Prior to the Arians firing though, I heard that upper management was not happy with several things and that they were planning big changes……….which was the main reason why Rooney came back from Ireland.

    I heard that Arians was going to be gone, that the team was not happy with Roethlisberger, and that they will probably not resign Wallace or bring back Mendenhaal. Interesting moves ..

    There was also a rumbling that Rooney wanted to fire Tomlin and replace him with Jeff Fisher, hence the real delay in Fisher taking so long to make his coaching decision. Interesting to say the least.

    I guess time will tell if these all play out this off season

  18. Steelers organization haa done a pretty good job with hiring coaches over the years, so I will go along with it. New blood and some different tactics will be fine, especially in the red zone. Another experience set to work with Ben will also be good for Ben’s development.

    But if they don’t improve/upgrade along the OL, they will still have issues next year when Ben continues to have to run for his life and have a weak ground game.


  19. The only worse person they could have hired for team morale and staffing continuity would have been Hue Jackson. I’m holding my nose on this one.

  20. The positive spin is that he had great success in Arizona and his personality issues that doomed him in KC should be mitigated by the fact he’s not going to be in charge of everything with the Steelers.

    The negative side of things is the offense in KC was only successful when Charlie Weis was on the staff and Haley was by all accounts an out-of-control jerk who was so paranoid by the end he thought his personal cell phone was bugged.

    The probability for entertainment is going to be high, regardless.

  21. dirtdawg55 says: Feb 6, 2012 5:49 PM

    Zeedoubleyou, you can take Warner, Fitz and Boldin all you want. Seems we beat those guys already.


    Yeah, but we’re still waiting for you to beat Flacco, Smith, and Boldin…

  22. Haley’s kind of a kook, but he knows offense and is a heckuva lot more creative than Bruce Arians. He’s also not going to let Roethlisberger wrap him around his little finger. Ben needs an OC who can push him to step up to his potential, and this is the guy to do it. Kugler is a terrific offensive-line coach and has been turning sow’s ears into silk purses for a couple of years. Now we just need to trade some of the dead weight for some talented linemen, and this can be one scary offense. With our offensive weapons, ranking 21st of 32 was ridiculous. Barring injury, I’m expecting a significant improvement in 2012.

  23. “ravenmaniacisback says:
    Feb 6, 2012 6:18 PM
    Originalsteelcurtain… team in the AFC???”

    Steelers were coming together and were the most complete team in the AFC right when Ben got injured…my opinion for sure. Steelers easily handled the Pats earlier and would not have lost a 3rd time to the Ravens…perennial “Paper Champs”. Sorry, Flacco, Rice and Boldin have come up small in the postseason, so YES the Steelers were the best team in the AFC before Ben got hurt (he stumbled around like Gronk yesterday..but for a few weeks)

  24. Interesting how the majority think this is a good hire, yet the majority condemned the Brown s hiring of Brad Childress.

    Childress has far more solid credentials in his role as an offensive coordinator then Haley, and other then Chilly’s last year with the Vikings, his teams got better every year he coached there. Fact is that he was a far more effective Head Coach then Haley, although both Healy and Childress seem to cut out to be OC’s and not HC’s at all.

  25. Wow. As a Ravens fan, I really don’t know what to think about this. Haley is a real firecracker. You never know when he is going to explode. He also has the reputation of a me, me, me type of guy. If so, that does not fit in with Mike Tomlin’s mantra of team, team, team. I wonder if this is Tomlin’s hire or was he told that Haley was coming in as the OC?

    Not sure what to think about this. Guy had a real good offense in Arizona with Warner, Fitz and Boldin. Just not sure if he is a piece that fits with the black and gold.

    Fascinating. I don’t think that this is a middle of the road hire. It will be a boom or bust kind of thing. Boy, it would be fun to watch the Steelers explode.

  26. Long-time Chiefs fan from Pittsburgh commenting again: I liked Todd Haley so much as a football player and a person that today I relinquished my Chiefs loyalties and jumped ship to becoming a Steelers fan. After 20 years and the direction of the Chiefs ownership/management, I’m going with Todd Haley, who I think is the epitome of what a football coach should be: smart, tough, disciplined, fiery, and loved by his players. I’m ecstatic for the Steelers and for Todd Haley; he deserved this.

  27. As a Chiefs fan I can tell you straight up Pioli screwed Haley. It’s Pioli’s roster, Cassel got hurt, and Pioli had Palko for his backup. Haley couldv’e won those last 2 of 3 just as easily as Crennel.

    Cassel’s not that good to begin with, but take away Cassel as a starter, a primary target in Moeaki, a top 5 RB in Charles, and add the FACT that they played the 1st place schedule and played the AFC East, NFC North and 7-9 is actually pretty good. With everyone healthy I picked them to be 8-8.

    Pioli didn’t address the d-line at all last year. With the exception of Kelly Gregg, while a decent player, Gregg didn’t make up for the loss of Shuan Smith or Ron Edwards. Pioli drafts Jon Baldwin, basically ignoring the RT gap. He didn’t draft or get a FA RT(cool, Free Agent Right Tackle=FART). Sorry I’m a child…

    Oh, and did I mention the Chiefs were 20 million under the cap??? I’m pretty sure 20 million can get you a decent RT, DT, and a decent FS. Not so Saavy Piscatelli was horrible as Berry’s backup. John McGraw was bad enough but Piscatelli was worse, he gave the Bronco’s their win over the Chiefs.

    All over the board here but in short I’d love to have Haley as an OC, quite frankly I think he got the shaft as the HC. The Patriot Way isn’t helping the Chiefs and Haley was our only non Patriot. The only thing Pioli hasn’t brought over was some spygate cameras, clearly he needs them.

  28. This is a GREAT Hire! This is a new OC who might even use a FB. He may do things other than 4 or 5 WR in the Red Zone. I wouldn’t mind seeing Mendenhall go. He would be a good Clev Brown, he plays when he wants to. This could be a fresh start for Ben. He could become Haleys Comet.

  29. Perhaps the question is which came first – the great player or the genius offensive coordinator?

    Was Warner to Haley
    As Brady was to Weis?

    Sometimes great players make you think the coach is great.

  30. I hear alot of people worried about Haley and Ben clashing, but Mike Tomlin is running that show period.

  31. @ravenmaniacisback and ppdoc13 …

    Not the greatest hire ever, but Haley was my dream OC as soon as his name was mentioned, and I’ve been holding my breath waiting for this announcement. Whatever issues he’s had with Pioli won’t have an impact here. He grew up in the Steelers organization and respects the Rooneys. He’s known them all his life. Yes, he’s a quirky kind of guy, but so was Chuck Noll. He never shook anyone’s hand 🙂

    I guarantee Tomlin and Colbert were on board with this hire because that’s how the Rooneys work. Tomlin’s a defensive guy, so this will be Haley’s offense–and the guy knows what he’s doing. I’m sure he also spent some quality time with Ben before any decision was made. Ben doesn’t like moving out of his comfort zone, but he does want to win and he does want a shot a Canton. He’ll work with anyone who can get him to the next level. Haley worked with a likely Hall of Famer in Kurt Warner. I expect Ben will be on board with this.

  32. jakek2 says: Feb 6, 2012 5:53 PM

    “So much for continuity. With a rapidly aging defense and a much tougher schedule, expect Pitt to go 7-9 and into 3rd place.”

    Oh, I don’t know about that.
    Being as they’ve appeared in three of the previous 6 Super Bowls tells me they’re due to return next year…

  33. I think it’s a bit humorous that a lot of people are analyzing this hire as if the Steelers season is going to turn on the personality of a coordinator. Is the guy a more than competent coordinator who is able to coordinate a Super Bowl caliber offense? Yes. While I’d love to think that his personality will sink the Steelers, it’s his competence that matters. Their season will ultimately turn on the players and lots of questions that exist regarding their roster next year…really too many to even begin to get into…

    Meantime, just feel compelled to say that this was a great thread…lots of great comments…I enjoyed reading them!

  34. @ usmutts

    Haley & Weis made Cassel a pro-bowler (25-7 TD to INT ratio) so I’d put quite a bit in the coach.

    Parcells one-liner of “if I’m expected to make the dinner then let me pick out the groceries”. Or something to that effect. And with 4 key ingredients missing, Haley was forced to make chiken salad without chicken, bread, mayo, and whatever the hell else is in Chicken Salad… Needless to say it ended up as a pile of blah, thanks to Pioli!

    Pitts better with Haley… Hell you may end up with Bowe out of the deal too…

  35. Good hire by the Steelers. I’m already psyched to play you guys again next year. Just wish we didn’t have to wait so long.

  36. Hailey doesn’t care about Ben’s feelings. He’s running the show and if Ben doesn’t like it, he can demand a trade. Any questions?

  37. Lets be real. if the Steelers hired Dirk Koetter (worst offense in the league in 2011) or Pat Shurmur (clueless) or Hue Jackson (can’t get arrested) for an OC and their fans would be screaming “Great hire!”

  38. Interesting hire. Really not quite sure what to make of it. His temperament doesn’t seem to be the right fit for the Steelers, but who knows — it might end up being a good move.

  39. It is what it is but before everyone talks about what a great hire this was and how it will improve the offense, aren’t the Steelers 20+ million over the cap? That means personnel has to go or restructure. You can’t make trades that far over the cap. Also, doesn’t Rooney want to go back to running the ball? Everyone’s talking about Haley’s success in AZ, it was via the pass. They never had a run game to speak of. KC did but Charles is better than Mendenhall and the OL was better in KC. It just looks like an average hire. Nothing spectacular. I don’t see why they didn’t just hire from within. I know what happened to Kirby was tragic but wasn’t there anyone else?

  40. It’s odd how most people seem to have this negative few of Haley from what the national media reports. Yet 90% of the KC fans (and many of the KC media) clearly support the guy.

    Then you factor in the reports from Yahoo and other outlets that Scott Pioli was purposely leaking negative stories about Haley to his buddies in the media and suddenly it doesn’t seem so strange.

  41. On paper this looks like a great hire… I cant think of a more disciplined team that can control Haley’s outbursts, Tomlin will keep him leveled headed and Big Ben will not tolerate the Big Outburst on the sideline, but passive aggresive behavior is not good I wonder how long it will take for Haley to EXPLODE… *BOOM!!!*

  42. great hire here, first off he is a pittsburgh guy so he knows what is expected from the rooneys, not to mention I believe the steelers in particular Ben need his fiery personality it reminds me a lot of cowher who wasnt afraid to get in your grill regardless of who you were. let me know when the draft gets here!

  43. I don’t think Haley will make much difference. Unless the Steelers get some better OLinemen, that offense is going to have the same problems it had this past year–i.e., inability to run the ball; unable to protect Roethlisberger when it counts.

  44. KC Chiefs fan here.

    Haley had some trouble finding & working with an OC that he could delegate to. He also had a bit of a hot head. But… we were a terrible team, 2-14, before he came to KC. You don’t turn around a losing culture without rubbing a few guys the wrong way.

    I think he and Pioli didn’t get along well and Pioli, as his boss, made it so uncomfortable for him that he started freaking out a little.

    According to the research guys at Yahoo Sports, it was actually Haley that was responsible for Cassel’s development, not Charlie Weiss. Haley didn’t like how Charlie was developing Cassel (too slowly) they wrangled horns, and then Haley took over essentially as QBs coach for the year… and then Weiss left.

    Haley… I like the guy. He’s a hot head but he had a really tough turnaround to do, he took us to the playoffs in his second year, and didn’t seem to have the GMs support behind him.

    My $.02

  45. I’m not sure the Steeler offense will improve on the field, but Todd Haley should be able to fix a few golf swings off the field

  46. td40 says:

    Lets be real. if the Steelers hired Dirk Koetter (worst offense in the league in 2011) or Pat Shurmur (clueless) or Hue Jackson (can’t get arrested) for an OC and their fans would be screaming “Great hire!”

    Steelers fans are generally regarded as among the more football knowledgeable in the league. We’ve been discussing this since Haley was first interviewed and several of us have been pretty vocal about wanting Haley over the other choices. Many fans have been vocal for years about wanting Bruce Arians to go. We’re not the “rubber stamp” type.

  47. Eh, lets see how the up coming season plays out before we give any kind of comments on what exactly is going to happen… ( lotto numbers please for all you homers that can predict the future ),… for now.. leave it as the haters “hoping” Haley is a bust. Of course,… you know… those Browns fans I see commenting… I have to say to you, I feel your pain… IM a Pirates fan as well,… it sucks to know each year your team has no shot at anything.

  48. As a life long Chiefs fan, i think this is a good hire. Haley had some personality and ego issues here in KC, but offensive talent wise he has it. He made the best out of mediocre players. I think him working with the Steelers (his current dream job) will motivate him to humility and to produce.

  49. Never question Pittsburgh Steelers Management in their coaching decisions… Haven’t you all learned by now that they know what they’re doing.. Superbowl 7 and 8 are coming soon to a theatre near you. Get your tickets in advance and enjoy the show!! These Steelers haters are going to hang themselves when it happens…Go Steelers!!

  50. I remember he demoted Bowe to like 5th string during the preseason his first year, I bet if he tries that with Wallace, Tomlins gonna smack him.

  51. Good one, but let’s be realistic. Other than one trip to the playoffs in 1947 (a first round loss), the Steelers never even *sniffed* the playoffs until 1972.
    Back then they didn’t have playoffs usually. The East winner played the West winner for the title. The playoff was forced when the Steelers and Eagles tied for the East lead. Eagles won 21-0.


    With a rapidly aging defense and a much tougher schedule, expect Pitt to go 7-9 and into 3rd place.
    I’m fairly certain that the Steelers age one year at a time just like everyone else. I’m also pretty sure 3 of the oldest guys (Hoke, Smith, Farrior) won’t be back next season.

    Lets be real. if the Steelers hired Dirk Koetter (worst offense in the league in 2011) or Pat Shurmur (clueless) or Hue Jackson (can’t get arrested) for an OC and their fans would be screaming “Great hire!”
    So which is it? Are Steelers fans clueless or do they just hate all those pesky Super Bowl appearances?

    Sometimes great players make you think the coach is great.
    Reminds me of the Patriots coach. Nobody accused Bill Belichick of being a genius when he coached the Browns. The reason they didn’t is because then he didn’t have Tom Brady! Now he’s a genius no matter what dumb things he does, because Brady makes it work anyway.

  52. I have to admit I was a little worried about Todd’s capability to get along with management.
    However I do think he will be a good OC. Knowing the Rooneys and how they operate the oganization should keep this from being a problem. He will improve our offense, take advantage of our passing game with Ben and our great young wide receivers, and at the same time make us a more balanced team. Bruce became too predictable with his play calling.
    At the same time no coach an earth can improve our offense if we do not get us more (much more) talent on the O-line

  53. It’s amusing how every story on the Steelers turns into people saying it’s their downfall. Wishful thinking I guess.

  54. dirtdawg55 says: Feb 6, 2012 5:49 PM

    Zeedoubleyou, you can take Warner, Fitz and Boldin all you want. Seems we beat those guys already.


    Yeah, but we’re still waiting for you to beat Flacco, Smith, and Boldin…
    And we are still waiting for them to win a SB! Get real, when awesome qb/receiver corps are thought of, bo one but a few ravens fans thinks of those 3.

  55. Interesting hire to say the least. Haley has gotten his dream job so he best do his best to plan, impliment, and execute a potent offense. Id like to see a 2010 arizona cardinal like offense on the field.

  56. ravenmaniacisback says:

    Deb….what makes you so sure that Tomlin was on board with this hire? Was Tomlin on board with firing Arians?

    I’m basing that on the way the Rooneys have operated the team for the last 40+ years. It’s been implied by some commenters here that Art II suddenly took over with the Arians firing. Not true. Art II assumed daily operation of the Steelers from Dan in 2003. He was instrumental in interviewing/hiring Tomlin. Tomlin is Art II’s guy, and he was given full authority to hire his own people.

    People read too much into Tomlin saying Arians would stay. It’s not unusual for coaches to say they’re not making personnel changes before they’ve had time to confer about what’s best for the organization. Or Rooney may have suggested it was time for a change. But I imagine they hashed it out until Tomlin and Colbert were in agreement. And I’m sure Rooney wouldn’t require Tomlin to hire an OC he didn’t approve. That would be dramatically out of character.

  57. Haley is not that impressive. If he’s proven one thing, he can maximize one side of the offense while completely neglecting another part. In 2010 with KC, he had the top ranked running game, and a bottom 3 passing game. IN 2011, he had his offense ranked 27th in the league, and in 2009, they were ranked 25th.

    With the Cardinals in 08, he put together the 2nd best passing attack in the league along with the worst rushing attack. Essentially the same thing in 2007. There is a reason why people weren’t jumping on him as a coordinator.

  58. frank, lately it seems like you’ve been tinkling all over my parades. Did you recently give up some vice–bowling, perhaps?–that’s making you disagreeable? 😀

  59. I’ll admit that I was being poopy with Alabama and LSU. Here, I’m not. I think Haley is a nut, and his record has been spotty. His success with the Cards was mainly in the passing game with Fitzgerald, Boldin and a healthy Warner. He doesn’t seem to stick anywhere particularly long, and he seems like the kind of guy who doesn’t get along well with others. At least the Steelers weren’t crazy enough to get Mike Martz, or crazy enough like the Bears to put Mike Tice at the position. At least Haley gets to work with an established QB, a talented vet like Wallace and an up-and-comer like Brown, and he has some experience with the position.

  60. @frank …

    Well, poopy I can handle. I’m a little more concerned about those offensive stats of Haley’s because you’re good with numbers. Just hoping Haley can push Ben to the next level. That boy has never worked up to his potential. He had too much success too soon and let his ego get the best of him. He’s at his prime. If he doesn’t get it now, it will be too late.

    I get what you’re saying about Haley’s ability to play well with others. Guess I’m counting on Tomlin to hold him in check.

  61. I think when you get down to it, it’s all how the philosophies and the personalities mesh, in addition to putting together an effective game plan.

    Steelers have a decent running attack, but looking at stats, I don’t even know how much that matters now. Giants were 32nd in rush yards, Packers were 27th, Patriots were 20th. If Haley can max out Roethlisberger and Wallace, he’ll do well.

  62. That’s what I’m counting on. Roethlisberger has so much natural talent that he’s just not tapping. With that receiving corps, it’s insane that we’re ranking in the bottom third on offense. A big part of the problem is that we just haven’t plugged the holes on the offensive line. But the right coach could get more out of Ben.

    I’m a smashmouth fan–nothing I love more than watching great defense and a pounding running game. That’s why I was born to be a Bama fan 😉 But in this era, we’ll be okay passing 60 percent of the time–as long the passing game is on target.

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