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View Full Version : Todd Haley will make Pittsburgh Steelers' offense better



Slapstick
06-04-2012, 11:41 AM
http://www.nfl.com/news/story/09000d5d829723ee/article/todd-haley-will-make-the-steelers-offense-better?module=HP11_content_stream
(http://www.nfl.com/news/story/09000d5d829723ee/article/todd-haley-will-make-the-steelers-offense-better?module=HP11_content_stream)



The installation of Todd Haley as the Pittsburgh Steelers (http://www.planetsteelers.com/teams/pittsburghsteelers/profile?team=PIT)' offensive coordinator has concerned some about the philosophical approach of coach Mike Tomlin's squad. However, I believe Haley will make the offense more balanced and dangerous in 2012. Here are three reasons why:

The Steelers will re-establish a dominant running game.

One of the biggest motivating factors behind Tomlin's decision to bring Haley aboard was a desire to get the Steelers back to their running roots. Although Haley's offensive background is deeply based in the passing game (he was a wide receiver coach/passing game coordinator prior to serving as an offensive coordinator and head coach in the NFL), he is an adaptable offensive architect willing to build game plans around the strengths of his personnel. When he was with the Kansas City Chiefs (http://www.planetsteelers.com/teams/kansascitychiefs/profile?team=KC), Haley built around a dynamic duo at running back (Thomas Jones (http://www.planetsteelers.com/players/thomasjones/profile?id=JON755755) and Jamaal Charles (http://www.planetsteelers.com/players/jamaalcharles/profile?id=CHA561428)) and a rugged offensive line. As a result, the Chiefs perennially ranked as one of the NFL's top rushing attacks during his tenure, including leading the league in 2010.


In Pittsburgh, Haley inherits a unit built to pummel opponents behind a reconstructed offensive line. With Maurkice Pouncey (http://www.planetsteelers.com/players/maurkicepouncey/profile?id=POU550260) manning the pivot and the recent additions of David DeCastro and Mike Adams, the Steelers' front line features young, mobile blockers with the strength, agility and quickness to block inline or on the move. This allows Haley to incorporate a host of power runs that feature guards pulling from either side (http://www.nfl.com/videos/auto/09000d5d825d5011/RB-Redman-28-yd-run). The Steelers will have a numerical advantage at the point of attack, leading to bigger gains from runners on inside plays.

In addition to taking advantage of a rebuilt offensive line, Haley will have a talented, intriguing and underrated running back corps at his disposal. With Rashard Mendenhall (http://www.planetsteelers.com/players/rashardmendenhall/profile?id=MEN393702) still recovering from an torn ACL, Isaac Redman (http://www.planetsteelers.com/players/isaacredman/profile?id=RED505171), John Clay and Jonathan Dwyer (http://www.planetsteelers.com/players/jonathandwyer/profile?id=DWY425790) will pick up the slack, and all three have shown flashes in Mendenhall's absence. Redman, in particular, is certainly capable of filling the role of lead back after showcasing his talents in two standout performances at the end of 2011, including a 17-carry, 121-yard outing in the AFC wild-card loss at Denver.

Measuring 6-foot and weighing 230 pounds, Redman is a hard-nosed runner with outstanding vision, quickness and burst. He excels at grinding between the tackles, but also possesses the speed to run away from defenders at the second level. His combination of physicality and elusiveness causes problems for opponents, and gives the Steelers' running game an added dimension.

Given Haley's history and commitment to the running game, the Steelers' rush attack should return to prominence. And Redman could be the one to lead the way.
Big Ben will become more effective as a passer.

Ben Roethlisberger (http://www.planetsteelers.com/players/benroethlisberger/profile?id=ROE750381) deserves a lot of credit for carrying the Steelers' offense with his superb improvisational skills, but he will be a more effective quarterback in a structured scheme built on a diverse, play-action passing game. A clever utilization of run fakes will lure second-level defenders to the line of scrimmage, creating big-play opportunities for receivers on intermediate and deep throws.

During Roethlisberger's most efficient season (2007), the Steelers had the NFL's third-best rushing offense and featured a complementary passing game built on a series of play-action plays. That was no coincidence. Haley will emphasize a downhill running game with a lot of offensive line movement, and he will incorporate similar action up front to deceive linebackers keying on the guards. Haley will also instruct Roethlisberger to carry out his fakes and footwork to sell the run before redirecting his eyes down the field to his intended target.

In regard to routes, the Steelers will likely feature "989" (both outside receivers running go-routes with the tight end going to the post) and "568" (split end runs a comeback with the tight end on a square-in and flanker on a post). These will take advantage of the speed and explosiveness of Mike Wallace and Antonio Brown on the outside, while capitalizing on the precise route-running of Heath Miller (http://www.planetsteelers.com/players/heathmiller/profile?id=MIL243606). The Steelers will also incorporate some bootleg and waggle passes to complement outside zone runs. Roethlisberger is athletic and mobile enough to work effectively on the perimeter, allowing the Steelers to manufacture more big plays in the passing game without having to risk throwing over the top of defenses (http://www.nfl.com/goto?id=09000d5d823655fd).

Wallace and Brown will raise their respective games under Haley.

Haley has developed some of the finest receivers in the NFL with his tough-love approach. His list of pupils includes Pro Bowl players Keyshawn Johnson, Terrell Owens, Larry Fitzgerald (http://www.planetsteelers.com/players/larryfitzgerald/profile?id=FIT437493), Anquan Boldin (http://www.planetsteelers.com/players/anquanboldin/profile?id=BOL283010) and Dwayne Bowe (http://www.planetsteelers.com/players/dwaynebowe/profile?id=BOW091822). He has also transformed previously unheralded players like Steve Breaston (http://www.planetsteelers.com/players/stevebreaston/profile?id=BRE019124) into key contributors. In Pittsburgh, he inherits a pair of young stars in Wallace and Brown. Both topped the 1,000-yard mark a season ago and displayed the kind of explosiveness that puts fear in the hearts of defensive coordinators around the league.

Wallace, a fourth-year pro, has developed into one of the NFL's finest deep threats. He has tallied 23 receptions of 40-plus yards, scoring 24 receiving touchdowns and averaging a whopping 18.7 yards per catch over three seasons. Wallace's ability to run past defenders on vertical routes is astounding, and the Steelers routinely send him deep. Haley will push Wallace to become a better intermediate route runner, so that he can function as a legitimate No. 1 receiver in the passing game. He has made strides to improve on that aspect over the past two years, but further refining his route-running skills would help him deal with more physical defenders.

Brown, a third-year pro, has equally impressive speed, quickness and elusiveness. He is a dangerous playmaker with the ball in his hands, and the Steelers do a terrific job of giving it to him in space. Using crossing routes over the middle of the field and quick hitches on the perimeter, the Steelers frequently put Brown in the position to make catch-and-run plays. Haley will continue putting Brown in motion to generate big gains. When he was the offensive coordinator for the Arizona Cardinals (http://www.planetsteelers.com/teams/arizonacardinals/profile?team=ARI), Haley routinely used stack and bunch formations with an assortment of crossing routes to create mismatches for his receivers in space. By aligning Brown in various positions within the offensive formation, he can guarantee a free release for the slippery receiver, leading to more production.


This one is actually pretty good!

Oviedo
06-04-2012, 01:36 PM
I think it was good too, but I wouldn't call our RBs "Underrated." If anything we are giving them way too much credit. No one we have healthy is in the same league as Thomas Jones or Jamaal Charles.

Slapstick
06-04-2012, 01:44 PM
I think it was good too, but I wouldn't call our RBs "Underrated." If anything we are giving them way too much credit. No one we have healthy is in the same league as Thomas Jones or Jamaal Charles.

Key word is "we". To the rest of the NFL, the Steelers' RBs are not considered to be threats...

Though, I bet Redman will top 100 yards again vs. the Broncos...

grotonsteel
06-04-2012, 02:11 PM
He talks about building offense on the strength of his personnel and then talks about dominant running game. Isn't he contradicting himself??

Steelers strength is passing game and offense should be build around it.

Oviedo
06-04-2012, 02:45 PM
He talks about building offense on the strength of his personnel and then talks about dominant running game. Isn't he contradicting himself??

Steelers strength is passing game and offense should be build around it.

It's all just talk right now. When the rubber hits the road it will become clear that Ben throwing to our RBs, TEs and Wrs is more effective than handing the ball 20+ times to Redman and/or whoever else you want to name.

We will pass more than run this season because that is what works and Haley goes with what works versus forcing a template.

Crash
06-04-2012, 02:46 PM
Ben Roethlisberger deserves a lot of credit for carrying the Steelers' offense with his superb improvisational skills, but he will be a more effective quarterback in a structured scheme built on a diverse, play-action passing game.

The majority of Ben's work comes from the pocket right now. This whole notion that Ben does nothing but run around and make plays is pure fantasy rubbish.

If you want to take away the minute amount of improvising Ben does and turn him into something he's not? Get Byron ready for $3 mil a year and move on.

RuthlessBurgher
06-04-2012, 03:37 PM
He talks about building offense on the strength of his personnel and then talks about dominant running game. Isn't he contradicting himself??

Steelers strength is passing game and offense should be build around it.

That article made 3 major points:

The Steelers will re-establish a dominant running game.

Big Ben will become more effective as a passer.

Wallace and Brown will raise their respective games under Haley.

#2 and #3 concern improvements to the passing game as well.

grotonsteel
06-04-2012, 04:09 PM
It's all just talk right now. When the rubber hits the road it will become clear that Ben throwing to our RBs, TEs and Wrs is more effective than handing the ball 20+ times to Redman and/or whoever else you want to name.

We will pass more than run this season because that is what works and Haley goes with what works versus forcing a template.

+1

I think RB like Mendy/rainey/Batch can be very dangerous as a WR. Steelers won't need red zone offense if we can give ball to these players in open field.

I just hope Steelers don't come up with RUTM to impose their will to start the game.

grotonsteel
06-04-2012, 04:15 PM
That article made 3 major points:

The Steelers will re-establish a dominant running game.

Let them re-establish a dominant running game as long as they are using Pass to set up the run.

Big Ben will become more effective as a passer.

Big Ben will become more effective passer if we go with 3WR-1TE-1RB set. Even Mendy will be more effective with this. Keep DJ off the field.

Wallace and Brown will raise their respective games under Haley.

I hope so. I hope Wallace can play more physically and fight for the ball.

feltdizz
06-04-2012, 04:24 PM
That article made 3 major points:

The Steelers will re-establish a dominant running game.

Let them re-establish a dominant running game as long as they are using Pass to set up the run.

Big Ben will become more effective as a passer.

Big Ben will become more effective passer if we go with 3WR-1TE-1RB set. Even Mendy will be more effective with this. Keep DJ off the field.

Wallace and Brown will raise their respective games under Haley.

I hope so. I hope Wallace can play more physically and fight for the ball.



I don't care how it's established as long as it's dominant...

While the 3WR-1TE-1RB set sounds great we may see our RB's flourish with a FB.... I know you guys hate DJ but I need to see him and the rest of our team in Haley's scheme before I write him off. I think the DJ hate is a little exaggerated.

I agree with you on Wallace...

Oviedo
06-04-2012, 04:29 PM
I don't care how it's established as long as it's dominant...

While the 3WR-1TE-1RB set sounds great we may see our RB's flourish with a FB.... I know you guys hate DJ but I need to see him and the rest of our team in Haley's scheme before I write him off. I think the DJ hate is a little exaggerated.

I agree with you on Wallace...

Don't need a dominant running game you just need effective when required

I sure Wallce is working diligently on getting stronger, learning how to use body position to better position himself to win 50/50 ball and learning how to better highpoint the ball...detect sarcasm now

Crash
06-04-2012, 04:30 PM
DJ sucks. He avoids contact.

Bill Cowher's FB offense won squat.

feltdizz
06-04-2012, 05:13 PM
Don't need a dominant running game you just need effective when required

I sure Wallce is working diligently on getting stronger, learning how to use body position to better position himself to win 50/50 ball and learning how to better highpoint the ball...detect sarcasm now

I prefer a dominant run game because it makes passing much easier. 2004-2005 were great years IMO. I want to dominate running and passing. I'm greedy.

flippy
06-04-2012, 05:24 PM
Call it whatever you will, I see Haley's #1 goal being providing Ben more than 1 second before contact.

Predictable play calling got Ben and the backs hit before they had time to make a play in a lot of situations.

We don't have to run 100 times a game. But the threat to be able to run when we want to has to be there. It makes the passing game more effective. Even when we've thrown to open up the running game in the past, we've said we're a running team.

And we don't have to throw 100 times a game. We should be able to run when we need to. The biggest gap in our running game is running out the clock with a lead. Cowher nearly never lost a big lead in the 4th quarter. I'm not as confident in Mike Tomlin teams in the 4th.

Oviedo
06-04-2012, 05:25 PM
I prefer a dominant run game because it makes passing much easier. 2004-2005 were great years IMO. I want to dominate running and passing. I'm greedy.

Then you had better hope we get two RBs much better than what we have.

Crash
06-04-2012, 05:37 PM
Then you had better hope we get two RBs much better than what we have.

Yep, they want to run the ball behind unknowns and late rounders.

Have they called LT yet?

I mean he's only one of the best pass catchers ever at RB and we need a 3rd down back so obviously they will call him, right?

RuthlessBurgher
06-04-2012, 07:16 PM
That article made 3 major points:

The Steelers will re-establish a dominant running game.

Let them re-establish a dominant running game as long as they are using Pass to set up the run.

In order to set up an effective play-action passing game, the opposition must respect a threat to run the ball.
Big Ben will become more effective as a passer.

Big Ben will become more effective passer if we go with 3WR-1TE-1RB set. Even Mendy will be more effective with this. Keep DJ off the field.

I also prefer 11 personnel as our base set, since that gets our best talent on the field at once (at this point, we have 1 good RB, 1 good TE, and multiple good WR's).

Wallace and Brown will raise their respective games under Haley.

I hope so. I hope Wallace can play more physically and fight for the ball.

I hope for this as well.

NorCal-Steeler
06-04-2012, 08:06 PM
I think it comes down to the routs we run more than if we should run more or pass more. More 3 step drops and dump offs to the TE and RB would make me happy.

Slapstick
06-04-2012, 09:33 PM
The author points out how Haley used multiple crossing routes to great effect in AZ. This has not been used a great deal in the Steelers offense of late. If Haley is implementing these route combinations and also installing different types of running plays, it's no wonder the younger players feel that the offense is so different...

Crash
06-04-2012, 09:47 PM
We throw plenty of short passes. That's not the issue. Never has been.

feltdizz
06-04-2012, 10:23 PM
Then you had better hope we get two RBs much better than what we have.

The RB situation is fine...

fezziwig
06-04-2012, 10:37 PM
We have the horses to run the ball and it seems like we will have an o-line that will add to that. Keeping the defense on their heals will help the passing game and the running game. Hopefully we now have an OC that understands that.

Shoe
06-05-2012, 12:24 AM
I think it was good too, but I wouldn't call our RBs "Underrated." If anything we are giving them way too much credit. No one we have healthy is in the same league as Thomas Jones or Jamaal Charles.

Jamaal Charles and Thomas Jones, at their best, are 1,200-1,400 yard rushers. And neither is at their best right now. (Jones is a platoon player, like Redman has been. And Charles is coming off a serious leg injury.) So let's not act like we're talking about Eric Dickerson or something. I can just as easily envision a 1,200 yard season from Redman as I can imagine a 600 yard season from him.

Given his glimpses, the opportunity to start, the shift in offensive focus, I think the bar is properly set.

feltdizz
06-05-2012, 08:52 AM
Jamaal Charles and Thomas Jones, at their best, are 1,200-1,400 yard rushers. And neither is at their best right now. (Jones is a platoon player, like Redman has been. And Charles is coming off a serious leg injury.) So let's not act like we're talking about Eric Dickerson or something. I can just as easily envision a 1,200 yard season from Redman as I can imagine a 600 yard season from him.

Given his glimpses, the opportunity to start, the shift in offensive focus, I think the bar is properly set.

Bingo... but you have to remember Redman was undrafted, winded in 2009 in preseason and doesn't have break away speed so that means he isn't up to snuff.

Shawn
06-05-2012, 09:23 AM
Key word is "we". To the rest of the NFL, the Steelers' RBs are not considered to be threats...

Though, I bet Redman will top 100 yards again vs. the Broncos...

I suspect Redman will top 1200 yards and 10 TDs this season. The NFL will soon see him as a threat.

Shawn
06-05-2012, 09:25 AM
Jamaal Charles and Thomas Jones, at their best, are 1,200-1,400 yard rushers. And neither is at their best right now. (Jones is a platoon player, like Redman has been. And Charles is coming off a serious leg injury.) So let's not act like we're talking about Eric Dickerson or something. I can just as easily envision a 1,200 yard season from Redman as I can imagine a 600 yard season from him.

Given his glimpses, the opportunity to start, the shift in offensive focus, I think the bar is properly set.

Agreed. I didnt even see your post before I said 1200 yard. I suspect that may be conservative. With Haleys focus on the run, and D's inability to really bunch 8 in the box due to the speed of our WRs...I see a big big season ahead for Redman. FF players need to pick him up early :)

phillyesq
06-05-2012, 09:42 AM
At least for me, Redman is not the concern. My concern is the lack of depth behind Redman.

Mendenhall is an unknown due to his injury, Batch is an unknown quantity due to his injury, Dwyer is largely unknown and seemingly injury prone, Clay is unknown and, so far, unimpressive, and while Rainey could do exciting things in a spot role, it is doubtful that he could fill in as a starter.

Oviedo
06-05-2012, 09:46 AM
At least for me, Redman is not the concern. My concern is the lack of depth behind Redman.

Mendenhall is an unknown due to his injury, Batch is an unknown quantity due to his injury, Dwyer is largely unknown and seemingly injury prone, Clay is unknown and, so far, unimpressive, and while Rainey could do exciting things in a spot role, it is doubtful that he could fill in as a starter.

You basically summarized why this notion of a dominant running game is nonsense. They may commit to running the ball more but they lack the talent to be dominant.

grotonsteel
06-05-2012, 11:13 AM
You basically summarized why this notion of a dominant running game is nonsense. They may commit to running the ball more but they lack the talent to be dominant.


:Agree


You want to give ball to your playmakers and Steelers don't have any play-makers at RB position. Why would someone want to take away touches from Ben/Heath/MW/AB/Manny/JC ?

phillyesq
06-05-2012, 11:59 AM
You basically summarized why this notion of a dominant running game is nonsense. They may commit to running the ball more but they lack the talent to be dominant.

I've never thought that they were going back to the days of run-run-pass-punt. I look forward to seeing an effective running game this year that can help establish the play action pass and that can take advantage if the defense plays both safeties deep to guard against the pass too much.

I certainly think that Redman can be effective in providing balance to the offense, but I can't envision him carrying the ball 25+ times per game. I think keeping Redman in the 15-20 carry range with some involvement of the other backs is a more realistic solution and probably what we will see. And that is not a knock on Redman, but more an acknowledgement of the questions on the depth chart behind him.

fezziwig
06-05-2012, 12:09 PM
I thought Redman was anticipated as a high draft pick at one point but his stock went south due to an injury or illness.

steelnavy
06-05-2012, 01:05 PM
You basically summarized why this notion of a dominant running game is nonsense. They may commit to running the ball more but they lack the talent to be dominant.

So how many yards gained per attempt would Redman have to earn to be considered dominant? 4.7? 5.0? more? Redman will only improve on his 4.4 from last year with the holes that are going to open up. The running backs got nowhere last year because of poor game planning, play design, play calling, weak front line and bad coaching. These guys are ALL NFL caliber athletes, which means that all they need is a good hole and they will move the sticks. And the ramped up O-line is going to make some big holes this year.

Crash
06-05-2012, 01:07 PM
Highest YPC in 10 years and somehow the backs never went anywhere during games.