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Latest names, updates on Cardinals’ search for new head coach

The NFL moves quickly.

Before the end of a Monday on Jan. 1 that saw former Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians retire, there were already a few names being reportedly linked to the open head coaching position.

With the job general manager Steve Keim has done assembling a talented roster and the team’s recent performance despite a slew of injuries, the job looks to be one of the more appealing post-Black Monday.

From the day since Arians retired to over a week later, the Cardinals had their first round of interviews.

Cardinals defensive coordinator James Bettcher met with Keim Jan. 3, and Vikings offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur did so the day after. Jan. 5 was a trip to Philadelphia, where the Cardinals interviewed Philadelphia Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz in the afternoon and Eagles quarterbacks coach John DeFilippo in the evening.

Patriots defensive coordinator Matt Patricia and Patriots linebackers coach Brian Flores met with Arizona the next day while Steelers offensive line coach Mike Munchak wrapped up the weekend with a meeting on Jan. 7.

That left Carolina Panthers defensive coordinator Steve Wilks and Atlanta Falcons special teams coach Keith Armstrong. Armstrong was on Jan. 8 and Wilks was two days later on Jan. 10.

In the week after the divisional playoffs, there have been major developments.

Shurmur is reportedly expected to take the head coaching job with the New York Giants, making him the first candidate out of the running.

Another job opened, though, as the Tennesee Titans fired Mike Mularkey, freeing up a spot that Wilks was reportedly set to interview for.

There was buzz regarding Flores in Arizona. ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported he is “very much in play” for the Cardinals.

On Tuesday, NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported that Munchak will have a second interview and ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reported DeFilippo is expected to have a second interview once the Eagles’ postseason concludes.

That interview for Munchak, though, was declined by him the following day. He issued a statement on why he turned it down.

The first scheduled second interview is reportedly with Armstrong, who will have it on Friday. Soon after, it was reported Wilks will also have his second interview.

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