ArizonaSports.com has learned through sources that Indianapolis Colts offensive coordinator Bruce Arians will not retain Ray Horton as defensive coordinator if he indeed lands the vacant Arizona Cardinals head coaching job.
Instead, it appears that Arians has already promised the DC job to Todd Bowles in any situation where he lands a head coaching job.
According to the source, Arians believed that he would land the Chicago Bears job, but that instead went to Marc Trestman, who coached the Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League for the last five seasons. Arians had made the promise to Bowles concerning the Chicago opening.
Bowles, 49, spent the 2012 season as a member of Andy Reid's staff in Philadelphia -- half of which was as the defensive coordinator after Juan Castillo was dismissed in October.
The interesting twist is that Arians and Horton are friends, having spent time together on the Pittsburgh Steelers coaching staff from 2004 to 2010.
ESPN insider John Clayton told Arizona Sports 620's Doug & Wolf Show Wednesday he believes Arians will keep his word to Bowles if he were to accept a head coaching position.
"It sounds very plausible to me because understand loyalty is a very big factor for Bruce Arians," Clayton said.
Clayton believes dynamics could play a factor in Arians' decision to accept the Cardinals job or not and thinks he may not be the right guy to take the reins.
"I think also what it does do is it shows you that maybe this might not be the best fit," Clayton said "Wouldn't surprise me if the Cardinals offer [Arians]. He's one of the hot coaches and he's a coach that I think would be one that would be doing a very good job.
"But does he really want to go to a team that may not have a quarterback and leave Andrew Luck and so he can stick to his guns on that and if it's true that he wants Todd Bowles as his defensive coordinator to keep the job he's obviously not bringing Whiz and Russ Grimm he knows that's not going to work but you can kind of see all those things kind of fitting together and maybe if he's offered the job it's one that's still going to go to somebody else."
According to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com, Arians is scheduled to meet with the Cardinals on Thursday about their head coach vacancy.
The Cardinals also spoke with Seattle Seahawks offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell about the job Wednesday.
Clayton said not to count out Bevell, who has become a popular name in recent weeks.
"You know Darrell Bevell grew up in Phoenix and he's all of a sudden become very hot," Clayton explained. "I mean he was in the final three's for Chicago and he thought enough of the Arizona job that he put Jacksonville off for a day to come see the Cardinals [Wednesday]."