Would Steelers trade Mike Tomlin, promote Mike Munchak?

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Appearing on local radio stations helps give me a good sense of what’s being said about the home team in its own town. On Monday, a visit with Andrew Fillipponi of 93.7 the Fan in Pittsburgh caused me to do a spit take.

During the segment, Fillipponi suggested this idea for the Steelers: Trade Mike Tomlin, and promote Mike Munchak to head coach.

It’s a stunning thought, an ultra-aggressive approach for an uber-conservative team that has allowed its insistence on continuity among its coaches to become part of its identity. But with quarterback Ben Roethlisberger publicly stumping for Munchak to stay with the team at a time when he’s one of the finalists to coach the Broncos, it’s an intriguing thought.

“I pray that fans write as many letters as they can to Mr. [Art] Rooney to keep Coach Munchak around,” Roethlisberger recently said. “He’s such a special coach. When the linemen are happy and love to play for their coach, they play better.”

With vacant jobs starting to fill (three have been filled in the past 24 hours or so), it could be hard to find a suitor for Tomlin, if the Steelers were inclined to even try. And the concept knocked me wobbly in large part because, typically, the trade of a coach happens when another team wants to get him, not when his current team wants to unload him.

If the Steelers were to start making phone calls about a possible Tomlin trade, and if any of that were to get out, how could the Steelers move forward with Tomlin? It would be difficult if not impossible. Also, with the three NFC vacancies now filled, the Steelers’ only remaining options could be within the AFC: Jets, Dolphins, Browns, Bengals, Broncos.

Of course, the notion that Tomlin could be available could prompt a team with a coach currently under contract to inquire about the possibility. And Tomlin’s minority status would allow the transaction to happen quickly, with no traditional coaching search.

The chances of it happening are somewhere between slim and none, but it’s an intriguing idea, one that should at least prompt interested teams to ask themselves whether it’s worth making a call.

51 responses to “Would Steelers trade Mike Tomlin, promote Mike Munchak?

  1. Tomlin needs to take the Steelers’ reality show drama to a new level: drive around the parking lot dragging a Lombardi on his tailgate ala George Costanza.

  2. O please make it happen Tomlin been around to long ,he has no discipline at all he’s more of a buddy than a coach,please please please get rid of Tomlin

  3. I don’t understand what value he would have. He’s lost control of the whole situation in Pittsburgh, and I think every team would have better options than trading for him.

  4. I’d support this 100%. And I’ve been a Mike Tomlin fan for years. “He’s never had a losing season!” Yeah, I’ve said it a hundred times.

    The Rooneys deserve some mud, also, the buck ultimately stops with them. A player cussing out a Hall of Fame player/legendary coach, and NOTHING is done about it? That is truly insane.

  5. All the dysfunction with Steelers & they think they could trade Tomlin….. they must be smokin the really good stuff to even think that would fly…
    I bet they couldn’t give him away!!! LOL yeah good luck with that!!!

  6. Mike Florio, do ex-players and ex-coaches sign the world’s toughest NDAs or what? I live in Pittsburgh and have never heard a peep about any of this craziness. How is this Pentagon-level secrecy maintained?

  7. Mr. Florio, do you know for a fact can coaches be ‘traded’? There are official rules and union agreements to trading players, do administrative contracts include a trade clause?

  8. Well, he’s not going to Cincinnati or Cleveland. There would be a mutiny in either city.

  9. They’d be trading the obligation to pay him as well. In fact, rather than just firing the coach, why can’t a team trade him away? Of course, there would have to be interest.

  10. No one would trade for Tomlin. He was given a franchise qb, great running back, and best defensive coordinator in football. Even Hue Jackson could of won a sb with the team Cowher left behind.

  11. Filliponi is an annoying blowhard. Hes the reason I stopped listening to the Fan. An annoying, self important Syracuse grad that is as negative as a Bill Belicheck presser is bland. He rips the Steelets every chance he can get. His luke warm take all season was how many more games the Steelers would have won if they would have just caved to Bell and gave him unending praise and money. Of course the fact that the Steelers offense was better and the run game incredibly more efficient was lost on the run of the mill Syracuse product.

  12. Have to say five years ago a certain team should have internally hired a HC and booted the existing coach. Performance since then by both clearly shows it would have been the proper choice. But the HC was black and the other coach was not. Couldn’t even do that (content of character argument made 55 years ago by a highly articulate minister still looking for a home in the 2018 NFL).

  13. This is what’s wrong with the Rooney rule. Because he’s African American a team could hire him with no other interviews. Why don’t they have to interview a Hispanic, Caucasian or an Asian? The owners should be able to hire the person they want. Period.
    I doubt Florio will post this.

  14. To trade that ass clown it would cost Pittsburgh two first round picks and five years of free Primanti Brothers to get rid of him.

  15. Why can’t (they can they just won’t) the Steelers just fire Tomlin for the mess that has been made and promote Munchak? I know it’s not much of a question because of how I worded that, but there is either more going on in this organization that what is coming out in public or the Steelers are being completely blind to a pretty obvious course of action.

  16. Fans are going to find out that Tomlin was probably the only reason the Steelers didn’t spend the last decade in the AFCN basement. Trade him! It’ll be fun to see this team hit rock bottom with its remaining cast of clowns.

  17. Please do this so the Steelers turn into a dump. Munchak huh. Steeler fans who bellyache about Tomlin obviously aren’t versed in the lore of their own franchise. Maybe you should look at the two prior coaches and their careers and appreciate who you have now as well.

  18. Look at the ridiculous comments. You are what you’re record says you are…..Mike Tomlin is a good coach. His record is easily among the top 4 coaches in the NFL. However, many commenters want to discredit his achievements and state that no team would want him. Can a brother get a fair shake?

  19. Yes, coaches can be traded but this site seems to think they can make it happen with the mere suggestion. First off, nobody wants Tomlin much less trading for the guy. Second, the other 31 teams are sitting around hoping the Steelers keep Tomlin so there is one less team to worry about winning the Superbowl, well make that 29 teams because Cleveland and Minnesota have zero chance.

  20. We all know that Tomlin won’t be fired, we also know that a trade won’t happen either. Which brings us back to what I’ve been saying for 2 years. Promote Tomlin to a front office position, it’s a win win, everyone saves face and accomplishes what everyone knows needs to be done.

  21. He’s the perfect example of the QB making the coach. He’s never impressed me. They’ve been good at picking players and exploiting the broken play. I just don’t think he’s a great coach on a team with a marginal QB or a spotty cast. Does he make the Stealers better? Or is he a manager in a room full of star athletes?

  22. I like the idea of trading Tomlin. However, who would even trade a ham sandwich for him at this point. He ruined the team in his attempt to coddle Antonio Brown. What team is going to want a leaderless leader like that who can’t seem to win games against the worst teams in the league on a team with six Pro-Bowlers. I think they should trade him to the LFL and just name Munchak the coach.

  23. I think the Steelers have underachieved the last few years and some of that could be on Tomlin but I can’t see him going anywhere. I’ve even had my own issues with him but He is 1-1 in superbowl’s and has had a winning season every year he’s been there and who else had done better in the afc north? Some should be careful of what they say because the Steelers will eventually win another superbowl and Tomlin will be there to rub it in your face.

  24. Yeah, let’s replace Tomlin with this guy whose best year isn’t as good as Tomlin’s worst, and let’s not pretend like those years from 2012 to 2015 had stacked rosters and even had a healthy Roethlisberger all of the time. Makes sense in fan land though.

  25. Keep Tomlin, I love the circus and the weekly headlines….its almost at the NY Jets level, although they have been kind of quiet the last 2 years.

  26. itsalwaysabout says:
    January 9, 2019 at 5:38 am
    Which of the coaches who were let go that had better records than Tomlin? Hang in there steeler fans, Brady can’t play forever.
    Neither can Ben.

  27. oh, please make it so……if anyone really thinks Tomlin going to take this team anywhere besides regular season glory, they seriously kidding themselves….#anyoneelsebutTomlin

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