Minutes after the reports came out, then it became reality. Bruce Arians is the new head coach of the Arizona Cardinals. It was the last opening in the NFL after the Jacksonville Jaguars made their hire early in the day. Arians leaves the Indianapolis Colts after leading them to the playoffs in the absence of Chuck Pagano.
Arians made a point to make it known his offense is different than that of his predecessor Ken Whisenhunt. Arians has worked with Andrew Luck and Ben Roethlisberger, so he knows a thing or two about good quarterbacks. Arians is more known to run a vertical passing game. That is definitely in contrast to Whisenhunt.
The Cardinals will be the sixth team Arians has worked for in the NFL. This is his first head coaching job – officially. He did a great job as the interim head coach when Pagano took ill and missed most of the season. He did a wonderful job with a rookie quarterback. That spoke volumes to me. Granted, there isn’t another Luck out there in this year’s draft, however, it does show the kind of job he can do with young quarterbacks.
Now, we wait and see what he does with defensive coordinator Ray Horton. It would be a shame if he didn’t keep him, however it was reported yesterday if hired Arians would not retain him. We’ll see how that plays out. For my two cents, I would love to see Horton stay. Certainly though it is understandable if Arians wants to bring in his own guys. I get that.
The Cards could have let this thing play out for several more days. They were no longer competing with other teams for a head coach. That being said, if they weren’t going with Horton, Arians was the best available out there. Truly, in the end, it appears my beliefs were correct. The Cards wanted (and probably needed), an offensive-minded coach.