Did Steelers' Arians retire or get fired?

January, 21, 2012
1/21/12
2:00
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The fact that Bruce Arians isn't returning as the Steelers' offensive coordinator next season was expected.

Arians
Arians
It had been speculated all week that he was going to retire or the Steelers weren't going to renew his contract. In the end, according to The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, it was all of the above. The paper reported that the team decided not to renew Arians' one-year contract and that led to a one-paragraph statement announcing his retirement.

The interesting part of this situation is that the decision not the retain Arians appeared to come from someone higher in the organization than Tomlin, according to the Post-Gazette. Sources told that paper that Tomlin had told Arian several times since the end of the season that he wanted him back for 2012 and Arians told people that he intended to come back.

Having the final say in hiring and firing assistants is one of the most important powers for a head coach, especially an established one.

But team president Art Rooney II indicated that it wasn't his call. Asked if he wanted Arians to return as offensive coordinator, Rooney told a Pittsburgh television station, "That's really Mike's decision."

The end result is the same -- Arians is out as offensive coordinator and the Steelers need to find someone who can get this group to reach its full potential.

Jamison Hensley

ESPN Ravens reporter

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