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Steelers QB Coach Mike Sullivan Loses Out on Raiders OC Job to Kliff Kingsbury



Pittsburgh Steelers quarterbacks coach Mike Sullivan
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterbacks coach Mike Sullivan in a game against the Cincinnati Bengals on Nov. 26, 2023. -- Ed Thomson / Steelers Now

Pittsburgh Steelers quarterbacks coach Mike Sullivan did not get the Las Vegas Raiders offensive coordinator position, one of two that he interviewed for. The Raiders instead hired former Arizona Cardinals head coach Kliff Kingsbury to head up their offensive coaching staff under new head coach Antonio Pierce.

Sullivan has been the Steelers’ quarterbacks coach since 2021, and was promoted in-season to also become the team’s primary play-caller after the firing of offensive coordinator Matt Canada.

Sullivan and interim offensive coordinator Eddie Faulkner were not considered by Tomlin to be Canada’s full-time replacement. 

“I’m looking at outside candidates and lining up the pecking order there,” Steelers head coach Tomlin said. “I am appreciative of their efforts in terms of what they did for us down the stretch. But I’m looking for outside candidates at this juncture.”

In addition to the Raiders job, Sullivan also interviewed for the New Orleans Saints position. That job has yet to be filled.

It’s not clear what happened with Sullivan if he doesn’t land either of the open OC positions he has interviewed for. The Steelers could bring him back as quarterbacks coach, or the team could reach a mutual parting of ways to avoid any awkwardness between Sullivan and his new boss, Arthur Smith.

It’s assumed that Smith will want to bring in at least some of his own staff members, but the only vacancy created so far this offseason on the offensive side of the ball has been the departure of analyst Glenn Thomas.

Kingsbury was also connected to the Steelers offensive coordinator position before landing the Las Vegas job. Of the five people the Steelers were connected to for their opening, four now have new roles: Smith with the Steelers, Kingsbury with the Raiders, Zac Robinson is now the offensive coordinator of the Atlanta Falcons, and Thomas Brown was hired as pass game coordinator with the Chicago Bears. Jerrod Johnson returned to his position as quarterbacks coach with the Houston Texans.