Steelers think Mike Munchak will make a big difference


The Steelers haven’t signed the first player yet, but they think they made a significant upgrade their offensive line.

General Manager Kevin Colbert told reporters that getting Mike Munchak on board as the line coach this offseason should have an immediate impact.

It was real exciting to have the opportunity for him to join us,” Colbert said, via Scott Brown of “I think [the players] will be all eyes and ears when you have a Hall of Famer talking to you and trying to teach you and I think they’re excited for that.”

The Steelers had plowed through three offensive line coaches under Mike Tomlin — Larry Zierlein, Sean Kugler and Jack Bicknell Jr. — and used some high picks on players there in recent years.

But the results haven’t always been indicative of the emphasis, and the former Titans head coach will be expected to work his magic on tackles Mike Adams and Marcus Gilbert in particular. The Steelers shuffled those two around last season, even starting seventh-rounder Kelvin Beachum when their results were uneven.

“I don’t think coach Munchak was brought in for any one player,” Colbert said in reference to Adams. “You hope that he gets the most out of all your guts and obviously he has the credentials to do that.”

Getting Maurkice Pouncey back from injury and the development of former first-rounder David DeCastro will also help, as Munchak tries to fortify an area that’s been a liability in recent years.

52 responses to “Steelers think Mike Munchak will make a big difference

  1. The best way for a young O-lineman to get better is via experience. Munchak’s timing is perfect: The Steelers’ O-line was gelling really well late last season.
    Keeping players healthy and in the lineup have been the team’s biggest problems. Maybe Munchak has the secret potion for curing what ails Pouncey every season.

  2. If and I mean If, the Steelers don’t make the playoffs again this year, watch out…


  3. You could have Hall of Famer Mike Munchak coaching the current NFL equivalent of Fordham’s fabled Seven Blocks of Granite and have Calvin Johnson and Larry Fitzgerald as recievers with Adrian Peterson and LeSean McCoy in the backfield but as long as Big Ben is the quarterback the Steelers will remain a bottom third scoring offense.

  4. Kugler did a great job before getting the head-coaching opportunity at UTEP. But I agree with Colbert that Munchak is an exciting addition to the coaching staff. We have some talented people on the o-line, and they can only get better under the direction of a Hall of Famer with years of o-line coaching experience. As bobzilla said, the real problem is keeping them healthy. If we can do that, for once, the line may not be a huge area of concern.

  5. The thing that hurt the Titans most after Jeff Fisher’s departure was having Mike Munchak move his focus from offensive line to coach of the entire team. For more than a decade, Munch absolutely rocked as an O-line coach. HUGE score for the Steelers.

    -Titans Fan

  6. Bubby Brister has at least one playoff win. Bengals would be wise to woo him out of retirement. Playoff caliber D, special teams, run game, o-line all being wasted. And I laugh, and laugh, and laugh…

  7. To the poster who said “firing Haley would help even more,” I ask: Why?
    In 2005, 2008 and 2010, when the Steelers reached the Super Bowls, Roethlisberger threw just 17 TD passes in each of those championship seasons. In Bruce Arians’ final season (2011) as the OC, Roethlisberger threw only 21 TD passes.
    Under Haley the past two seasons, Roethlisberger has thrown 26 and 29 TD passes, respectively. Granted, many of his TD passes last season were in garbage time and meaningless; still …
    Now that Roethlisberger has given Haley his undying endorsement, the local sports media have backed off of Haley and are saying the Steelers offense is now right up there with the “Greatest Show on Turf.”
    Roethlisberger has called off the dogs, and the local media are obeying their beloved Big Ben. When is the fanbase going to follow suit?

  8. Ben through garbage time and meaningless TD’s last season?! I don’t know, I didn’t check the box scores, but I don’t remember too many blowouts either way. Even the 2-score Bears and Bengals losses, they were in it 50-55min of the game. And do you think that maybe, just maybe the media is off his case because they see an elite QB in a system that seemingly works well.

  9. bobzilla1001, the bears and pats game were garbage time, the other games basically went down to the wire, stop your hating or pick a new team to be a fan of.

  10. Bears… Patriots… And I guess you guys missed seeing that debacle in London. Down 34-17 to the vaunted Vikings before Roethlisberger threw a meaningless TD pass.

  11. Munchak is a 7-9 coach recruited by an 8-8 team. Sounds about right considering the fact that the Steelers’ FO is all about lowering expectations these days.

  12. bobzilla1001, I guess you missed the part that they still had time to tie/win at the end in London. They got off to a slow start to the season.

    JMF, 8-8 team that claimed second in the AFCN, in front of the fluke SB champs. Steelers look more promising then the Ravens.

  13. JMF, 8-8 team that claimed second in the AFCN, in front of the fluke SB champs. Steelers look more promising then the Ravens.

    I’ve mostly ignored this misrepresentation until now. The Steelers were 2nd because of specific rules that govern playoff teams. If you look at draft order, the Steelers are actually the worse team, but hair splitting schoolyard comparisons are not my bag, baby. Both teams went 8-8 but only one of them on the heels of a SB win and two years of playoff victories. Sounds a lot better than a blown SB, a Tebow-and-done, and an 8-8 year which (in my view) will prove to be the start of a mediocre three peat.

  14. Munchak is going to make a huge difference with this steelers line. Watch and see. The key like many others have said here is keeping the offensive line healthy for once(like every year). Expect Big Ben to have another good year as long as he stay healthy. As we all know, defense is the key for this team to get back in the playoffs. Just hoping we can steal some gems in the draft.

  15. I call that a win-win. Steelers were 1 game away from playoffs and get a better draft position. Teams play for playoff position not(for the most part)draft order.

    Steelers have the better QB, the up and coming RB, and we’ll see how the receiving core looks(Smith better then Brown, Steelers with the better corp last year). The Ravens have a top dollar slightly above average QB, a work horse RB that’s old for the position and a receiving corp that can look worse then last. The Ravens defense should still get the upper hand over the Steeler D but that mess should get worked out quick.

    Steelers with the better upside.

  16. Expect Roethlisberger to “have another good year”? Never saw a fanbase with such low standards for its quarterback. It’s actually quite embarrassing.
    The Steelers’ defense is no longer in the top 5. It’s now a middle-of-the-pack defense, the kind of defense that Rodgers, Brady, Brees and Manning have had for years.
    If you are all waiting for the Steelers to reconstruct a defense like the one that carried the team to three Super Bowls, you better stock up on lots of Snickers candy bars.
    And there’s a reason the second-place Steelers are drafting ahead of the third-place Ravens: Strength of schedules. The Steelers had an easier one than Baltimore.

  17. The Steelers have a lot of raw, unpolished talent on that line. DeCastro, Gilbert, and Adams all have potential that can be tapped. The hiring of Munchak means they can count on him to hopefully groom the offensive lineman they already drafted, and focus on the aging defense in the draft.

  18. Bob face it, Ben could have a Peyton Manning year and you would still gripe. The reason they went 8-8 was not all if the offense. I am not expecting them to have a top 5 defense over night but it’s inevitable in the steel city. Strength of schedule means a bit but most if the schedule had a lot if the same teams and the fact is Steelers played better in those game.

  19. You guys are wrong about the Bears game being a blowout. It took a challenge reversal for a Bears TD (great freaking E Bennet catch), otherwise Steelers get the ball back down 6 with 1/2 quarter to play. The TO’s at the end made it ugly, but again, they were in it for 50 minutes in that one. And zero garbage time TD’s.

    Pats game was the only blowout last year.

  20. Let me amend my statement. Steelers got second due to going 4-2 in the division, Ravens went 3-3. Ravens did beat the Vikings and Dolphins while the Steelers didn’t but the Steelers beat the Bills and Packers when the Ravens failed to. The Steelers scored more points and had positive net points.

    The Ravens offense is a train wreck and the Steelers defense needs a youth injection. It’s hard to make the playoffs when the team MVP is probably the kicker but if a team that finishes 8-4 after a dreadful start can carry that momentum over to next season you can make playoffs and even play to the SB(the ravens did it 2 years ago)

  21. Also the Steelers were 5-8, could have tanked to get a top 10 pick but they played for the playoffs, finished with wins against the Bengals, Packers, and Browns, 2 of which were division winners.

  22. Best off season coaching move in the division by far. He will have these guys running like a fine tuned engine. He can coach Adams up as well and use him as a spare part for the engine. Forcing 8 in the box is going to open up the passing game big time. While we reload on defense look for the Steelers offense to be top 5 in the NFL.

  23. Once Ben started doing more of the play calling with the Steelers increased use of the no huddle, the offense really took off last year. First half of the year, he was sacked 32 times. Second half of the year, just 9 times. That’s not a coincidence. The running game even got better. If the line plays that well all year long – and Munchak will help – this could be a very good offense.

  24. I’ve mostly ignored this misrepresentation until now. The Steelers were 2nd because of specific rules that govern playoff teams. If you look at draft order, the Steelers are actually the worse team, but hair splitting schoolyard comparisons are not my bag, baby. Both teams went 8-8 but only one of them on the heels of a SB win and two years of playoff victories. Sounds a lot better than a blown SB, a Tebow-and-done, and an 8-8 year which (in my view) will prove to be the start of a mediocre three peat.

    Spin little top spin. In your view the ravens won the SB last off season, but when they actually had to play the games they crawled home to an 8-8. So spin it little flop …I mean top the steelers closed the season much stronger and don’t have Jump Ball Joe. Can’t wait to see Munchak lead the offense line thru that Swiss Cheese Ratburd D..

  25. This will be another failed offseason for Ozzie. Funny how I don’t see anymore “In Ozzie we Trust” yapping.

    Ozzie took you out in one swoop. And he set your franchise back 10 years. You have too many issues to correct to bounce back. Flacco, Rice, Ngata, Suggs, ILB’s, Safeties, Oline, Center. Across the board you’re a third place AFCN team.

  26. Haha, I forgot WR! The Steelers are going to win the division next year. And the world will be set back on its axis.

  27. bobzilla, Do you EVER have anything positive to say about Big Ben or is it always negative related?
    I am not interested in hearing about your annual over analysis of Big Bens stats again when the defense is the biggest reason the steelers didn’t make it to the post-season. All I was saying was Big Ben had a “good year” considering he had ANOTHER injury-plagued offensive line with no running game till the end of the season. Quit trying to compare the guy to qbs like Peyton Manning who practically passes on every down. Big Ben will NEVER be that type of qb. Show me where the low standards are.

  28. Joemontanaflacco

    I remember sitting here last offseason hearing from you how the Ravens were going to dominate the AFCN for years to come and the Steelers were on the way to the cellar. Well You are staring up at the Steelers and the Steelers are heading back to the top to the Division we have dominated for years.
    As the nest burns…. Go Steelers

  29. I’ve been complaining for a while that the front office was drafting the talent, but poor coaching kept the offensive line from becoming the powerhouse that it should be.

    We got multiple 1s, 2s and 3s drafted – these guys should be AWESOME. Instead they’ve been HMM HAH.

    Munch will prove me right or wrong, either way I’m pretty excited to see that they finally took care of a great position of glaring weakness. Hallelujah!

    Side note to Munch: Please do not email porn to the entire NFL staff alias, that’s already happened with a former position coach. Thanks.

  30. Mike Adams and Gilbert SUCK! I love watching the Steelers play and I pay attention to that O-Line play the most since it’s been so bad. Gilbert allows people to fly right around him almost 80% of the time. 90% of the time when you see Ben on the Move, you’ll see the person went around Gilbert or Adams! These O-Lineman should earn a BASE Salary and then earn big money as they perform. I am tired of them getting big checks and then failing to protect the QB and failing to open holes for the RB. With a decent spine, the Steelers are dead in the water. If the o-Line would attack the line like they attack a buffet we would have 8th Championship already!

  31. Poor Steelers’ fans. So much pompous bravado and nothing to show for it. The Thanksgiving game said it all. Even a cheating coach couldn’t dig you out of that hole. Expect an even bigger pair of beatdowns next year.

  32. A ratbird choke at the end of the season to inevitably end up in 3rd Place behind the steelers (after they were supposed to rule the North) lol, a beatdown at the hands of the steelers at Heinz field and a 8-8 season with nothing to show. Poor Raisen fans.

  33. With 10:28 to go in the first, Flacco to Torrey Smith for 56 yards as Cortez Allen gets a mouthful of M&T turf. Only thing better is when Smith snags Flacco’s perfect bullet for the TD while Ike Taylor runs around with his hands in the air like he just don’t care.

  34. All the bandwagon fans are back. Yep, O line coach fixes it all. In a Haley offense with an aging defense, a QB on the back end of his career, a coach who forgets where he’s standing, leadership void, and serious cap issues.

  35. Oh sure, as good as the Titans were how could you miss with this guy? Lets see… Below average + Average = Great? Good luck with that! At least they still have their 12th man… Tomlin. Just he should try not to take the 12th man label so literally by actually being on the field making tackles this year.

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