A quick evaluation of head coaches in the NFL shows that the Pittsburgh Steelers have a great consistency because since the year 1969, only three men have coached the team.
Mike Tomlin Head Coach
Super Bowl champion (XLIII)
2× AFC champion (2008, 2010)
Motorola NFL Coach of the Year (2008)
They include Chuck Noll (1969–1991), Bill Cowher (1992–2006) and Mike Tomlin (2007–present). Noll is the only one who managed to bag four Super Bowls with the Steelers, making him one of the most outstanding coaches in the NFL.
However, his successors also deserve praise for ensuring the team maintained high standards after Noll retired in 1991, with Tomlin focused on improving Steelers odds for next season.
For that reason, among the trio, where does Tomlin stand?
To put this comparison into perspective, the answer will only take account of the opening seven seasons of their tenure, and the number of games won during this period being the qualifying factor for their success. For Cowher and Tomlin, each posted a 71-41 record which ranks them first, a good indication for Steelers odds for next season. Noll trails the duo at with a record of 55-42-1, mostly attributed to a sluggish start to his 22-year career with the Steelers.
The only players to survive from pre-Noll squads were Roy Jefferson and Andy Russell, but only for one a season. However, they managed to receive Pro Bowl honors. On the other hand, both Cowher and Tomlin joined the Steelers with many talented players already in the squad. Cowher found a sturdy and well-equipped Blitzburgh defense, including Carnell Lake, Rod Woodson, and Greg Lloyd who remained instrumental during the days of defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau. Yet again, Tomlin signed as a head coach just one season after the Steelers won Super Bowl XL in 2006. Perhaps he can tweak his squad again to improve Steelers odds for next season.
Solid drafting can also be attributed to the early success of both Cowhers and Tomlin. Cowher drafted both Levon Kirkland and Joel Steed of the Blitzburgh defenses in his inaugural season. Both players created reinforced the unbreakable defense of the Steelers at the time. Tomlin also signed LaMarr Woodley and Lawrence Timmons for the same reason to produce a deserved win over the Arizona Cardinals in Super Bowl XLIII.
To engineer a juggernaut, Nolls’ first draft class included Jon Kolb, L.C. Greenwood and Joe Greene. Futhermore, the ex-head coach schemed one of the ultimate drafts in the history of the game because four players became Hall of Famers after their drafting in 1974. Winning games in the playoffs is one factor that sets Noll a distance from Tomlin and Cowhers. Even after losing two of his opening three games, he beat the next six opponents in succession and won two successive Super Bowls.
Tomlin has shown some mixed playoff results with two one-and-dones, but the other two appearances landing him in the finals of the SB. Winning Super Bowl XLV would have ranked him with Nolls through the 7-year stint. When it comes to Cowher’s seven years with the Steelers, he managed six appearances in the tournament, with disappointment in the end. He incredibly won Super Bowl XL, which is one of his top achievements in Pittsburgh.
The coming seasons could define Tomlin’s career at the Steelers and fans should deduce some preliminary answers about the ending. In recent seasons, the Pittsburgh Steelers have made key changes to their Super Bowl squads. Tomlin aims to push his team a championship stature to outmatch his predecessors.
Head Coaching Record
|Won||Lost||Ties||Win %||Finish||Won||Lost||Win %||Result|
|PIT||2007||10||6||0||.625||1st in AFC North||0||1||.000||Lost to Jacksonville Jaguars in AFC Wild Card Game|
|PIT||2008||12||4||0||.750||1st in AFC North||3||0||1.000||Super Bowl XLIII Champions|
|PIT||2009||9||7||0||.533||3rd in AFC North||–||–||–||–|
|PIT||2010||12||4||0||.750||1st in AFC North||2||1||.667||Lost to Green Bay Packers in Super Bowl XLV|
|PIT||2011||12||4||0||.750||2nd in AFC North||0||1||.000||Lost to Denver Broncos in AFC Wild Card Game|
|PIT||2012||8||8||0||.500||3rd in AFC North||–||–||–||–|
|PIT||2013||8||8||0||.500||2nd in AFC North||–||–||–||–|
|PIT||2014||11||5||0||.688||1st in AFC North||0||1||.000||Lost to Baltimore Ravens in AFC Wild Card Game|
|PIT||2015||10||6||0||.625||2nd in AFC North||1||1||.500||Lost to Denver Broncos in AFC Divisional Game|
|PIT||2016||11||5||0||.688||1st in AFC North||2||1||.667||Lost to New England Patriots in AFC Championship Game|
|PIT||2017||13||3||0||.813||1st in AFC North||0||1||.000||Lost to Jacksonville Jaguars in AFC Divisional Game|