NEW ORLEANS -- It appears Mike Tomlin will add to his coaching staff soon, perhaps as early as this morning. Not sure who it is, but he has three openings.
One, of course, is the offensive line coach. It will not be Russ Grimm. He also has two openings, ostensibly two for special teams. But Tomlin did not commit to having two special teams coaches for 2013 as he has had for his first six seasons (although he fired one in the preseason last year).
We’ll see, now onto some stuff from the site of the Super Bowl:
--- If you’re coming to New Orleans this week (or any week for that matter), remember to be on the alert when prowling around the French Quarter at night. It can still be a dangerous place after you get off the beaten path that is Bourbon Street. An employee of The Fan, 93.7, here to help Ron Cook with his 10-2 radio talk show this week, was mugged last night in that district and sent to the hospital.
--- San Francisco arrived here last night and the Ravens don’t get here until late this afternoon. The town is dressed in purple, though – for the Mardi Gras. Caught part of one parade on Canal late yesterday afternoon after we arrived.
--- Word has it that Tomlin is looking at Danny Smith, the special teams coach of the Washington Redskins. Smith is a Pittsburgh native.
--- A little shorter today because of my schedule here. I’ll let you know about tomorrow’s chat, whether we have to push it back or not.
--- YOU: Has anyone hired Russ Grimm for OL coach yet and are there any other openings besides the Steelers? I know he won’t come back here because of the circumstances surrounding him not getting the Steeler’s Head Coaching job, but I’m surprised he wasn’t hired by someone. What are your thoughts?
ME: Russ has nothing going right now. I was told that if the Chicago Bears had hired Bruce Arians as their head coach, he was set to hire Ken Whisenhunt as his offensive coordinator and Grimm as his line coach. He almost got the job. Of course, Whisenhunt wasn’t going to be Arians coordinator in Arizona and for some reason, Grimm wasn’t going to coach for the Cardinals in 2013, even if Whisenhunt was brought back, perhaps management had something to do with that one.
--- YOU: based on the salary cap situation and Kevin Colbert’s comments it appears that the Steelers will let every unrestricted free agent walk without an offer. I am not surprised by the veterans like Hampton and Foote. Wallace basically ushered himself out but why wouldn’t they offer Keenan Lewis a contract? His play was vastly improved and not having him against San Diego made for easy pickings by Rivers. To me he seems to be the kind they keep. They drafted him brought him along to a credible starter in the league. Yes Cortez Allen played well and is an intriguing prospect, but Ike Taylor can’t play forever. I think it is better to have both young cornerbacks on the roster with an aging veteran than one young CB and a veteran. Am I wrong? Thanks for taking the time to read ramblings from guys like me and of course the chats!
ME: At this point in the game, they usually do not offer contracts to impending free agents. They’ve found through the years that when they do that, it becomes a starting point for the player to negotiate with other teams. The player and his agent believe if the Steelers are offering that now, they would offer it in March if no other team could beat it. And, if other teams beat it, so much the better. The Steelers have found it better to allow their free agents to field offers from other teams and then, if they believe they can be competitive, jump in with an offer. That, of course, differs from them signing a player to a multiple-year deal a year before he can become a free agent.
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