PITTSBURGH — The Steelers’ offensive identity under new offensive coordinator Eddie Faulkner and play-caller Mike Sullivan was to hone in on the details and work players into advantageous matchups and positions. No, Sullivan is not the only one who calls plays. Faulkner revealed that he suggests plenty of plays on the sideline with Sullivan. But the detail-oriented factors might mean the entire offensive staff has to buy in and contribute.
“The buy-in felt great,” Faulkner said. “I love the energy. I don’t think they can fake it that good, for it not to feel real, and it feels real. And so man, we just going to take that momentum and keep rolling with it.”
Faulker engineered a week where the meetings changed. The running backs and offensive linemen changed their meeting times on their own after the bye week. But Faulkner implemented something similar to the passing game with the quarterbacks and all of the eligibles in there. The receivers, Kenny Pickett, Faulkner, and Sullivan sat down, went through each area of the field an each potential situation, and picked out the plays they liked the most. Does it sound bare minimum? Yes, but when the communication was that off, guys were left wondering ‘why’ some things happened.
But that means the entire offensive staff got a hand at the table. Previously, that did not necessarily happen. Guys like offensive line coach Pat Meyer have a crucial idea plucking out the run game and what it does well. But it comes from intricately knowing your room. It’s that where Faulkner’s detail-oriented plan comes into shape.
“I’m just such a detail guy, that I’m going to always intensify things in that regard when it comes to details and people’s more involvement because I feel like that’s part of the equation,” Faulkner said.
More than anything, Faulkner involved all the assistants in explaining in greater detail why everything happened. These concepts and ideas seemed to put everyone on the same page. Interestingly, most of the communication errors were gone. They overcommunicated and talked about each play call they would like and why they would call them.
Now, the hope that can turn into points. But there is no doubt that the Steelers players are buying into what Faulkner and Sullivan are selling. The execution now needs to improve, and Pittsburgh has to embrace the details on every play to improve that.