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Omar Khan Takeaways: Best Leaders Use Their Resources

The Pittsburgh Steelers new general manager is ready to roll - and learn.

PITTSBURGH -- The Pittsburgh Steelers introduced their new general manager, Omar Khan, to the world this weekend - and with his introductory press conference came plenty of notes.

Khan touched on everything from new hires to growing up learning football from his father. There wasn't a dull moment during the 20 minute press conference as Pittsburgh learned everything about their new leader.

In a little under a half hour, we learned everything we could only a few days after the hire. There's plenty of notes. These are the biggest takeaways.

This Has Always Been the Dream

Everyone loves a feel good story, and Khan brings a good one. He's the son of two immigrant parents who grew up in New Orleans. He was a Saints fan, but his dad made sure to teach him about the NFL's greats.

"I grew up a die-hard Saints fan," Khan said. "When I used to talk about Rickey Jackson and Pat Swilling, Sam Mills, Vaughan Johnson, he'd say let me teach you about this guy named Jack Ham and Jack Lambert, and I used to know everyone on the Saints team, and he used to tell me about this guy Joe Greene and Franco Harris. It's kind of ironic that, fast forward, I ended up in Pittsburgh because I've been hearing about those guys --Lynn Swann -- he loved great players and the great teams, and he knew all about them."

"My parents were just thrilled," Khan said on telling his family the news. "My dad and especially my dad, he's been looking forward to this moment for a long time."

Now, he's working in the most storied franchise in NFL history. It's been his dream to be in this industry since he realized he wasn't going to make it here on the field.

You've got to love that.

There's Not Going to be Much Change

Khan made it clear that this should be a smooth transition because of his 22 years in Pittsburgh. Replacing Kevin Colbert is the ultimate challenge, but Khan is going to stick to the "Steeler way" as much as he can.

No changes to contract negotiations will happen. The team will continue to operate as they were - not negotiating during the season and waiting until a player is on the final year of his deal.

He'll also look to operate the scouting and financials as they were.

"I can tell you from the first day I started here in Pittsburgh, it's been all about football and building a championship roster here, and I learned that from day one, and that's not going to change," Khan said. 

The Hires of Andy Weidl and Sheldon White

The additions of Andy Weidl and Sheldon White are bigger deals than you'd imagine. Khan's financial background helps with the business side of things. Meanwhile, Weidl brings the scouting.

"I'm confident in saying that I've touched every aspect of the football operations, obviously some more than others," Khan said. "But I think every good leader understands his strengths and his weaknesses, neither of which I'm going to discuss here publicly, but I think every good leader surrounds himself with smart people that are going to help him succeed, and that's my plan.

That's how everything should operate. Khan has things to learn, and the Steelers made the smart move of bringing in scouting minds to avoid missteps from Colbert.

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Listening to the people around him was the best words he said at the presser. The Steelers know how to run a football team - use your resources.

Steelers Will Keep Building Through Draft

Khan mentioned a couple times how much he's learned from Colbert over the years. The two have been together basically the entire time they were both in Pittsburgh. Now that Khan is in charge, he's taking those lessons and continuing to grow them.

"A couple things," Khan said on lessons from Colbert. "Number one, when Joe Greene speaks, you listen. That's number one. Number two, and this goes way before Kevin, but we're always going to build this through the draft, and I can't ever forget that, and I won't. He was always big on that, and that goes back to Art and Mr. Rooney, and that's going to continue."

Colbert spent months drafting talent coming out of college. Khan will rely on Weidl and others to help him build his process, but the Steelers' philosophy on building young talent isn't changing. 

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