When the broadcast of Pittsburgh Steelers games cuts to the coaching booth, you’ve probably seen a guy sitting next to offensive coordinator Matt Canada. That’s Canada’s assistant, Chris Morgan, who was promoted to offensive line coordinator yesterday following the dismissal of Adrian Klemm.
“I’m excited about the spin that his perspective will bring us,” Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin said about Morgan.
Tomlin is hopeful that the intimate relationships that Morgan has built among the staff and players this season will carry over into the new role.
“I think it’s a really good opportunity for me to gain some exposure to C-Mo’s potential because he will be a candidate for the job. What better way to see what he’s capable of doing than to allow him to do the job for the remaining portions of the season.”
A Tall Task
These next two weeks are huge for Morgan, as he’s auditioning for a more prominent role in the Pittsburgh Steelers organization. Though two games is a small sample size, if the offensive line improves under Morgan’s direction, the interim promotion could potentially become permanent.
Making the most of a good opportunity will certainly be a challenge in this situation. Morgan has a daunting task in front of him as he inherits an offensive line that’s one of the worst in the NFL. The unit has drastically underperformed through 15 games, and it’s hard to imagine a significant about-face this late in the season, especially given its player personnel’s lack of experience and/or talent.
Pittsburgh is averaging 87.6 rushing yards, and that’s on the high side. Though he displays a ton of effort and heart with each attempt, Najee Harris has only managed 3.7 per attempt for a 65 yards per game average.
Morgan came to the Steelers in February as a veteran offensive line coach. He served as offensive line coordinator with the Falcons from 2015 to 2020, where his line helped block Matt Ryan’s way to franchise and career-highs in yards (4,944) and touchdowns (38). Morgan was also instrumental in the continued development of Pro Bowlers center Alex Mack and tackle Jake Matthews. In 2018, in addition to coaching the O-line, he was run game coordinator.
Before joining the Falcons, Morgan spent a season with the Seattle Seahawks, where he was part of the 2015 Super Bowl staff as the assistant offensive line coach.
Morgan first entered the NFL as assistant O-line coach with the Oakland Raiders in 2009 and spent time with Washington (2011-2013).