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Steelers Rumors: Mike Tomlin’s Potential Extension Date Revealed Despite 7 Years Without a Playoff Win

Published 03/16/2024, 3:09 AM EDT

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USA Today via Reuters

Despite a playoff drought spanning nearly a decade, Mike Tomlin appears set to have his period as head coach of the Pittsburgh Steelers extended soon. Steelers insider Mark Kaboly, who provided his take on Tomlin’s contract in July, came up with the latest report on Tomlin’s contract status with Art Rooney II’s team.

The long-awaited new contract would further cement Tomlin’s already alluring legacy, which includes a Super Bowl win and being one of the four coaches to reach 160 wins with the franchise. However, the inability to advance past the Wild Card round since 2016 looms large – fueling both Tomlin’s critics who demand a return to postseason success and supporters who believe in his consistent excellence and hope to continue the historic partnership.

According to Mark Kaboly, head coach Mike Tomlin is expected to receive a contract extension from the team soon. “I think it’s just a matter of putting pen to paper they like to do it in their own terms a lot of times that’s not until right before the training camp starts,” Kaboly stated in The Rich Eisen Show. “The Rooneys obviously like to have cohesion in their organization and nobody loves a guy more than Mike Tomlin.”

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Back in July 2023, Kaboly reported that the Steelers must extend Mike Tomlin’s contract because “they don’t have any other choice.” This was the time when the team was pretty quite on the extension front. Interestingly, five of Tomlin’s six career extensions have come around the start of training camp so this seems quite likely.

The reported imminent extension comes despite Tomlin’s Steelers failing to win a playoff game since 2016 – a seven-year drought that has led to increasing criticism of the long-tenured coach. However, Kaboly and others close to the organization point to Tomlin’s strong relationships with ownership and players as a driving factor. “There’s not a guy in this league that does not want to play for Mike Tomlin,” new Steelers safety DeShawn Elliott raved.

Tomlin further posits him as one of the most successful coaches in franchise history. He has never had a losing record across 16 seasons in Pittsburgh. Tomlin is one of only two head coaches in NFL history to begin his career with at least 14 consecutive non-losing seasons.

Yet the other side of that sustained success advocates for a change, With a new quarterback and rebuilding roster, doubts linger over whether Tomlin can recapture his postseason magic before his current deal expires. An extension brings heightened pressure to produce playoff wins immediately.

Is Mike Tomlin’s legacy on the line?

An extension for Mike Tomlin would be a doubling down by the Steelers on his place among the franchise’s iconic coaches. Tomlin already ranks third in regular season wins (163) behind only Chuck Noll and Terry Bradshaw. His .636 regular season win percentage is the 11th-highest in NFL history. He’s one of only five active head coaches to defeat at least 31 current franchises.

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USA Today via Reuters

Such lofty status cements Tomlin’s legacy of excellence in Pittsburgh. However, it also amplifies the lingering blemish of just a single Super Bowl victory early in his career back in 2008. The nine other playoff appearances since have yielded only three AFC Championship games and zero titles. As Tomlin’s 17th season looms, the pressure intensifies to capitalize on a new window with a revamped roster.

Read More: Amidst Kenny Pickett’s Trade Decision, Pittsburgh Sandwich Chain Offers $25 Jersey Solution for Steelers Fan

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“He hasn’t slowed down one bit,” Kaboly stated about the 52-year-old Tomlin. His fiery hands-on coaching style persists but has yet to recapture that championship magic of his second season at the helm. An extension signals faith from the Rooney family that Tomlin can buck the recent trend of playoff disappointments.

Read More: Mike Tomlin Took Over Steelers Coaching in 2007. Since Then, The Team Never Had to Look Back

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Written by:

Sanu Abraham

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Sanu Abraham is an NFL writer at EssentiallySports. As a passionate football fan, he brings fresh perspectives and new ideas to the coverage of the sport and its many exciting personalities. He seeks to write lively and engaging articles that play to his expertise.
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Edited by:

Mallika Singh