Randy Fichtner Let Go
(Joe Sargent/Getty Images)

On Thursday morning Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin announced that offensive coordinator Randy Fichtner would not be returning for the 2021 NFL season. He also announced that the offensive line coach, Shaun Sarrett, and defensive backs coach, Tom Bradley, would also not be returning for 2021.

“I want to thank all three of the coaches for their commitment and dedication to the Pittsburgh Steelers. They have all played integral roles in our success and I am appreciative of their efforts. Personally, Randy and I have been in Pittsburgh since I hired him in 2007, but our relationship began well before that. He has been a friend of mine for years and wish his family nothing but the best, and I am eternally grateful for our relationship both on and off the field.”

Mike Tomlin on releasing the the coaches

This change in coaching staff was expected as Randy Fichtner received a lot of criticism for his play calling during the 2020 season. However, he also received plenty of hate over the last several years as the Steeler’s play-caller. Especially when their offense had become stagnant during the playoffs. Shaun Sarrett’s removal was also expected as the offensive line had played poorly all year. The only removal that appears unprecedented is that of Tom Bradley. His defensive backs performed relatively well in what was an odd football season.

At his season ending press conference, Mike Tomlin was quiet and had only this to say

“Change is a part of our business. I’ll acknowledge the possibility for that. We are just beginning the process of having those types of meaty discussions that usually produce changes or non-changes. It is that time of year. I anticipate those discussions happening and happening rather soon as we plot a course to move forward.”

After these words many expected change to come in from within the Steelers organization. But, no one expected this change to come so soon. Nor did they expect Randy to be fired so soon. Could this be a new era for the Pittsburgh Steelers?

All three coaches will see their contracts expire when the 2020 season ends. During this time they will be able to seek positions at other franchises.