PITTSBURGH -- Mike Tomlin isn't going anywhere.

Days after walking out of a postgame news conference during a question about his future, the Pittsburgh Steelers head coach said that his fire for the job has "intensified" and that he expects to get a contract extension this offseason.

"I expect to be back, and I would imagine that those contract things are going to run their course," Tomlin said at his end-of-season news conference Thursday. "Art [Rooney II] and I have a really good, transparent relationship. We communicate continually often. I don't imagine it's going to be an issue, and I imagine it's going to get done in a timely manner at the appropriate time, but my mindset is to coach his football team."

He also explained his walk-off during the final question of the news conference after the wild-card loss to the Buffalo Bills and acknowledged that he didn't handle it well.

"I certainly could have handled that situation better than I did," Tomlin said. "But I'll also say this, I just believe there's a time and place for everything and postgame press conferences are probably not the place to address contract issues and things of that nature. It's just a very individual thing, and on game day I doubt any of us are in that mindset, Certainly I am not."

Tomlin signed a three-year contract extension in 2021, tying him to the team through the 2024 season. Outside speculation swirled late in the season that the coach might consider stepping away for a year after the 2023 season, but Tomlin laughed and responded with a simple, "no" when asked whether he had told anyone he had considered taking a break.

"I understand speculation is a component of what it is that we do," Tomlin said. "I try not to get caught up in it or distracted by it, particularly when it is not where I'm at. And so that's been my mindset regarding it."

Tomlin, who's set to enter his 18th season as the Steelers' head coach, said his process for evaluating his future at the end of each season hasn't changed.

"I coach football; that's what I do," Tomlin said. "I'm respectful of the position that I hold. I have no sense of entitlement in terms of what I do. I just got a high level of respect for what we all do in this space, and I try to earn it daily, and I think that's just my mentality.

"I don't ponder a lot of things. I'm appreciative of things daily, and I try to work with urgency daily, and I don't know that that has changed. It probably hasn't from my perspective. I'm always on go."

That "go" mentality and his experience also leads him to believe he's still the right person to lead the Steelers, despite not having won a playoff game since 2016.

"Fifty-one years of life," he said, explaining why he's the man for the job. "I mentioned that -- I think in this setting earlier -- I'm not lacking confidence in my ability to do the job, while at the same time there's frustration because I want that confetti for this group.

"And so whatever we got to do to do it, whatever changes need to be made, I'm open to it."

Although he acknowledged that there is some importance to the extension this time around because of the security it would provide to candidates for the vacant offensive coordinator position, Tomlin downplayed the urgency and significance of the timing to get it done.

"That's a component of it," Tomlin said. "Fielding less questions from you guys regarding those things is a component of it, but that's probably the only level of importance for me, to be quite honest with you; security is cool, but it's not a top priority for me.

"I've seen a lot. I'm not job-scared, but it does provide less questions and things of that nature."

Tomlin said Thursday that he anticipates making an outside hire at offensive coordinator, meaning that Eddie Faulkner and Mike Sullivan, who split the coordinator duties after the in-season firing of Matt Canada, won't reprise those roles next season.

"I want us to be versatile and dynamic," Tomlin said, describing what he's looking for in an offensive coordinator. "Obviously we got to score more points. I want to be able to keep defenses off-balance. I want to utilize all the talent that we have at our disposal. I'm excited about this process and the talent pool out there."

Although Tomlin plans to go outside the organization for an offensive coordinator, he said the starting quarterback for the 2024 season is already in-house. He committed to Kenny Pickett resuming his role as the starter but added that Pickett will have competition.

"There's always competition in this thing," Tomlin said. "We don't anoint anyone, man. I'm appreciative of his efforts and where he is and excited about continuing to work with him, but certainly he will be challenged from a competition perspective moving forward. Competition brings the best out in all of us."

Quarterback Mason Rudolph, who turned in consistent and solid performances in four starts to end the season, is set to be a free agent, but Tomlin expressed a desire to bring him back.

"I cannot underscore how impressive it is to be ready -- forget performance man -- to be ready to deliver, and he was," Tomlin said of Rudolph. "And that preparedness showed, and so certainly we are less speculative about his capabilities because there's evidence of it, evidence of it in tough circumstances."