PITTSBURGH - Is Mike Tomlin repeating one of the legendary mistakes in Steelers history?
Tomlin hired Todd Haley as offensive coordinator in February, a big change after five years of Bruce Arians. Haley is the first coordinator in 13 years hired from outside the organization.
Tomlin is also requiring the team to learn Haley's terminology.
This is no small matter. Imagine trying to give someone directions if left was now right and vice versa. How easily could you do simple math problems if the value of six was now seven? Could you make change quickly if dimes were now called quarters?
That's what happens when new systems are installed. The simple solution is to have the new coach adapt to what the players have been using.
Chuck Noll hired Joe Walton as his offensive coordinator in 1990 and decided the Steelers would learn Walton's language.
The players, led by Bubby Brister, rebelled, and things were never quite right. Noll retired after the 1991 season.
There's always a sentiment for showing highly-paid players who's the boss, but why have 25 people adapt when it would be easier to have one coach make the switch?
Change is always difficult, made even tougher when people aren't speaking the same language.
The Pittsburgh Penguins lost to the Philadelphia Flyers, but they may have had a hand in ending the Flyers' season.
Philadelphia apparently didn't have much left in the tank after beating the Penguins, and fell in five games to the New Jersey Devils.
It happens. Hockey is a high-intensity sport and a particular series can be a drain.
Meanwhile, some people are upset because Jaromir Jagr said his season with the Flyers was the most fun he had in the NHL.
Jagr's first two NHL seasons coincided with the Penguins' Stanley Cup victories in 1991 and '92.
Really, though, Jagr's statement isn't so outrageous.
When he was a rookie, he could barely speak English. Everyday living was a challenge for him. He couldn't crack the first power unit, which already included Mario Lemieux, Kevin Stevens and Ron Francis.
This season, Jagr returned to the NHL after an absence of several years and proved he could handle an 82-game schedule at age 39.
Now he has a greater appreciation for how hard it is to succeed in the NHL.
In that context, the past season probably was especially satisfying for him.
Mehno can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org