Steelers offensive coordinator Matt Canada has become one of the most unpopular coaches in all of football. His detractors are so motivated to get him out of Pittsburgh that they’re now using his reaction to a great play as fodder for further criticizing him.
The clip, shown on the Ravens-Steelers broadcast after quarterback Kenny Pickett threw a 41-yard touchdown pass to receiver George Pickens, has Canada showing no emotion while others in the coaching booth celebrated the go-ahead score.
The popular interpretation is that Canada didn’t call the play, that Pickett audibled to it, and that Canada was upset — despite the outcome.
It’s impossible to come to that conclusion with any degree of certainty. Maybe he didn’t want to celebrate prematurely. Maybe he realized the Ravens would still have time to try to win the game. Maybe he was thinking about the play to be called for the two-point conversion attempt after the score that gave the Steelers a 14-10 lead.
Or maybe he simply realizes that, at this point, nothing he does will decrease the public pressure to get rid of him.
Whatever the explanation, it’s impossible to conclude that: (1) Pickett had freelanced; and (2) Canada was pissed. For those who desperately want Canada out, however, that’s the only interpretation that bolsters the narrative that Canada needs to go.
Even with the Steelers at 3-2 and technically in first place in the ultra-competitive AFC North, the locals want Canada out. They chanted “Fire Canada!” at the football game. Last night, at the Penguins’ opener, they were chanting it again.
To change the narrative, the Steelers will need to have much better offensive performance after their Week 6 bye, when they travel to L.A. to face the Rams in a rematch of Super Bowl XIV.