I've often said that Pittsburgh Steelers fans are spoiled. That's a testament to how the organization has maintained a level of excellence for many years. And that level of excellence is due to their coaches.
Three of them to be exact; the most recent of which is Mike Tomlin, who joined the team as Bill Cowher's successor in 2007, and has signed a contract extension which will keep him with the team through 2020.
If Tomlin coaches through end of his extension (2020), the #Steelers will have 3 - 3! - head coaches in 51 seasons.
— Will Graves (@WillGravesAP) August 4, 2017
No other team in the NFL has the same level of consistency: having only three coaches in a half century would be futility for most franchises, but the Steelers have enjoyed a tremendous amount of over the last 48 years. Starting with Chuck Noll in 1969, and continuing with Bill Cowher in 1992 on through Tomlin's start in 2007, the Steelers have been at or above .500 a whopping 36 times. They have not had a losing season since a 6-10 campaign in 2003, a year following the opening of Heinz Field.
One year with a straight-up losing season in fifteen years of a stadium is incredibly wild, but it gets better: Mike Tomlin hasn't had a losing season yet.
As Tomlin enters his eleventh year as the head of the Steelers, he has yet to suffer a losing season. He has only missed the playoff three times in his ten full seasons as coach, with two 8-8 records and the 2009 season, where the team narrowly missed the playoffs with a 9-7 mark as the defending Super Bowl champions. (The team nearly made the postseason in 2013 as well, missing out on tiebreakers as the Kansas City Chiefs lost an overtime game in the final week of the season to the Chargers.)
In all, the Steelers head coach is one of few in the league to reach 100 wins in ten seasons, amassing a 103-57 mark. He is the youngest coach in NFL history to lead his team to a Super Bowl, as well as the youngest to win it. His resume boasts of two Super Bowl appearances (with one win), three AFC Championship appearances, seven playoff berths, and five division titles.
The Steelers seek to continue their standard by keeping Tomlin in charge for the next four seasons, and perhaps, as long as he'd like. Via the official team announcement, it doesn't appear that Coach T has lost the same focus which has maintained that standard:
I truly appreciate this contract extension, and I want to thank Art Rooney II for his support as well as everyone within the organization. My first ten years in Pittsburgh have been an amazing experience for me and my family. I’m proud to call Pittsburgh home.
My focus is on the upcoming season, and our goals remain the same as they always are – to bring a seventh Super Bowl championship back to our city.
Should Mike Tomlin bring a seventh trophy to the Steel City, he could cement his own status as a potential future Hall of Fame coach.
Spoiled or not, Steelers Nation should be ecstatic to know their leader will be captaining the ship for many years to come.
Statement from Coach Tomlin following his contract extension: pic.twitter.com/42bzdRmDAC
— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) August 4, 2017