HomeSportsGiants Interview Key Steelers Assistant for Defensive Coordinator: Report

Giants Interview Key Steelers Assistant for Defensive Coordinator: Report

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Steelers senior defensive assistant/secondary coach Teryl Austin

It’s believed that the Pittsburgh Steelers plan to promote senior defensive assistant/secondary coach Teryl Austin to replace recently-retired Keith Butler as the team’s new defensive coordinator. But Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin has yet to act, perhaps opening the door for Austin to leave for another team.

On Saturday, Paul Schwartz, who covers the New York Giants for the New York Post, reported that new Giants head coach Brian Daboll has interviewed Austin for defensive coordinator.

As noted by Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Tomlin couldn’t keep the interview from happening, even if he wanted to, because it’s a promotion/play calling role (and arguably would offer a greater degree of responsibility than he would have in Pittsburgh).

Hiring ex-Giants assistant head coach/defensive coordinator Patrick Graham to replace Butler is no longer an option, as he was hired by the Las Vegas Raiders on Friday. Graham interviewed for Pittsburgh’s defensive coordinator position earlier in this hiring cycle, as did Dallas Cowboys defensive passing game coordinator/secondary coach Joe Whitt Jr. and New Orleans Saints secondary coach Kris Richard.

Defensive coordinator isn’t the only coaching position that Tomlin needs to fill, either. He also needs a new offensive line coach and assistant offensive line coach now that Chicago has hired Chris Morgan as its offensive line coach. In December 2021, Pittsburgh lost its offensive line coach when Adrian Klemm “jumped ship” for a job with the Oregon Ducks.

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Teryl Austin Has Been a Head Coaching Candidate in the Past

With the exception of one season, Teryl Austin, 56, has been coaching in the NFL since 2003, following a dozen years at four stops in the college ranks (Penn State, Wake Forest, Syracuse, Michigan). After four seasons as defensive backs coach with the Seattle Seahawks (2003-06) he spent three years as defensive backs coach with the Arizona Cardinals (2007-09), followed by a one-year stint as defensive coordinator at the University of Florida and three seasons as secondary coach for the Baltimore Ravens (2011-13).

He went on to serve as the defensive coordinator for the Detroit Lions for four seasons (2014-17), followed by one year as defensive coordinator for the Cincinnati Bengals (2018). Austin has been working alongside Tomlin in Pittsburgh since 2019.

Earlier this month he told Will Graves of the Associated Press that he has been interviewed for NFL head coaching positions 11 times. All of those interviews came prior to joining Mike Tomlin in Pittsburgh.

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4 Steelers at the 2022 Pro Bowl

Meanwhile, the 2022 Pro Bowl will take place on Sunday February 6 at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas at 3 p.m. ET (ABC/ESPN). Four Steelers players are in attendance, namely AP Defensive Player of the Year favorite T.J. Watt and fellow first-team All-Pro Cameron Heyward.

They are joined by wide receiver Diontae Johnson and rookie running back Najee Harris, who were added as replacement players.

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