Completely agree Shawn. Not sure where DeVille was coming from on his comments. I don't think anyone can identify a "system" that Haley is known for. Arians on the otherhand, is known for long developing downfield passing with a sprinkle of random RUTFM thrown in to keep the RB's from losing focus during the game.
Mike Walace had plenty of opportunities to produce in Haley's offense...
It was not Haley's offense that held him back, but his own reluctance to give 100%...
1. Wally wasn't around to work with Haley in the offseason or training camp.
2. Wally was disinterested in football and only worried about his payday.
3. Everyone likes ragging on Arians, but I'd say he actually did a nice job of working with what he had. The worst OLine in football, a QB that can stay alive for guys to get down field, a QB that's as good as anyone throwing 20-40 yards downfield, and an understanding of the odds that gaining big chunks of yards is what leads to production/results. I think he maximized the system. The Steelers didn't want Ben to take so many shots. They made BA the scape goat. But it was a combo of Ben and the line. BA was really good with formations and getting guys open down field. I've always though he got the big picture, but struggled a little in the in game execution. I do think he's a much better fit as a HC. But overall he was good for Ben and really pushed him to find his fine line in his game. The approach with Haley is Haley's brought in to find the line for Ben and create a system.
I can see both styles having value. But you have to think if we ever gave Ben a great OLine like some of the other QBs and the threat of a running game, maybe he can hold the ball longer and attack downfield. And when you think about the OLIne it seems we're trying to fit these guys to the system instead of to Ben's style of play. Max never quit blocking on plays. To his credit, he was one guy that catered to Ben's style of play. I think Adams is the only other guy that will play to the whistle. Many of the other guys seem to have a QB clock in their head and stop blocking when they think Ben should have gotten rid of the ball.
Arians, Ben and the OL can take the blame. If you are a bright OC, and you have a poor OL, and a stud QB...you don't develop your O around plays that take 5-7 seconds to develop. You shorten the drop back, shorten the routes, and compact the O until you get enough talent on the OL to keep your franchise QB healthy. You ignore your cowboy QB and his desire to extend plays, and you help him focus on quicker reads and getting the ball out. You play to the strengths and around the weaknesses of your O. That isn't what Arians did, therefore the criticism is warranted. I believe he is a good coach, but not a great coach because he has a hard time developing an O based upon the talent he has.
Haley on the other hand recognized all of that and developed an O the franchise QB hated. It took some balls to stand up to Ben and force him to play within the OL skill set. And at the end of the day Ben was having a record year until he got hurt. If this team stays healthy, I suspect many here will be singing Haley's praises, and when he is gone for a HC job many will lament his loss.
1. Sure he was on record pace - all the "average or better" QBs in the NFL are on amazing paces -- the league rules have changed and is set up for passing. SEVEN QBs surpassed the Steelers Yardage record in 2012. He would have made the 8th, making 25% of the league starters in a single year.
2. While I appreciate the dink-and-dunk for keeping Ben on his feet, he seemed to effectively eliminate the occasional deep ball. He had a WR that was virutually uncoverable deep and allowed the defense to cheat up - and make it harder to run (see the plummet in rushing stats), and inevitably, Ben was injured, anyway.
Personally, I loved the 3-4 times a game that Ben would "load up" and throw a bomb. I loved it because i knew there was a good likeliehood that the camera would pan to wallace running side-by-side with a defender, right before leaving him in his dust for 6.
What he comes up with this season... well, it won't include the fastest guy in the NFL... he missed his chance on that one.
1. It's not about comparing Ben to other QB's, its about comparing Ben to Ben within different systems. The difference was impressive.
2. While I agree about the deep ball, I believe that happened for several reasons. One is that Haley recognized there was a cost to going deep to Wallace...Ben's health...that our OL was inadequate. Two, I believe the ownership expressed a desire to keep Ben healthy, thus forcing Haley's hand. And finally, I believe Wallace halfazzed the season, and was behind in his understanding. We don't have another true deep threat.
What you need to look at is the emergence of Heath Miller. He has been underutilized and ignored for years, then he has a record year. Haley recognized the skill set and used it. Wallace was merely slow ballin, and waiting to get paid. I just can't blame Haley for that. Haley will go deep, when his OL can protect Ben, and when he has willing talent to go deep.
Shawn you missed (or just ignored) the relevance of the first point... I'm saying: OF COURSE last year's Ben was better than any other Ben. That's for 2 reasons - one, the already stated rule changes over the last few years to encourage a more wide-open passing game, resulting in nearly all QBs being better versions today than they were a few years ago. And, secondly, Ben's only played all 16 games once.
What I'm saying is if he makes 16 HEALTHY games at this point in his career, in TODAYS' NFL, I don't believe it really matters who the coordinator is. He's going to have the best season of his career.