The Steelers announced offensive coordinator Bruce Arians is retiring, but a report by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette cited sources that said his had was forced when was told his contract would not be renewed for 2012.
The decision is believed to have come from team president Art Rooney II, with coach Mike Tomlin telling Arians multiple times since the end of the season that he wanted him to return.
Arians, 59, spent the past five seasons with the Steelers and was working under a one-year contract.
"I appreciate his efforts over the past five years as the team's offensive coordinator and for helping lead our offense to new heights during his time with the Steelers," Tomlin said in a statement Friday. "I am grateful to Bruce for contributing to our success and wish him nothing but the best in his retirement."
According to the Post-Gazette, running backs coach Kirby Wilson would have been a likely candidate to replace Arians, but he is recovering from burns over 45 percent of his body suffered in a fire at his home Jan. 6. Quarterbacks coach Randy Fichtner is another potential in-house candidate.
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