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From STL: Horton blew the Rams away in interview

Ray Horton did a great job in his first year as the
Arizona Cardinals’ defensive coordinator.

Credited with molding an underachieving unit into one that
practically carried the Cardinals to an 8-8 season, Horton
is one of the reasons Valley fans are excited about the
future of their NFL team.

Word leaked last week that Horton was interviewing with the St.
Louis Rams about their vacancy at head coach, though, and
apparently the 41-year-old impressed.

So much, in fact, that D’Marco Farr, former Rams player
and current radio host for 101Sports in St. Louis, says
the architect behind Arizona’s stingy defense might be the
favorite to get the job should the team miss on top choice
Jeff Fisher.

“It could be Ray Horton, that’s a guy they think highly
of,” Farr told Arizona Sports 620’s Doug and Wolf Tuesday.
“He came up here and blew them away in their meeting,
absolutely blew them away.

“He was very enthusiastic, they loved what he had to say,
so if not Jeff Fisher he could be the guy that’s right at
the top of the list.”

Horton bolting for St. Louis would be a significant blow
to the Cardinals, who are hoping to build a Steelers-like
defense in the desert. Horton, the third man to give it a
shot under Ken Whisenhunt, appears to be on the right
track, so losing him – to a division rival, no less –
would not be a good thing.

But it’s a legitimate possibility, as Farr said he brought
up Horton in passing, somewhat as a joke, to Rams
Executive Vice President of Football Operations and Chief
Operating Officer Kevin Demoff, only Demoff wasn’t
laughing.

“He didn’t laugh; he likes the guy. He really, really
likes Ray Horton,” Farr said. “He said he interviewed
well, he loved his enthusiasm, came in with no notes, off
the top of his head and had a pretty good plan on how to
turn this thing around.”

Before you start looking around to see who the Cardinals
can hire to fill Horton’s spot, know that Farr said there
is no doubt the Rams prefer the former Tennessee Titans
coach to the Cardinals assistant. However, the Miami
Dolphins are also courting Fisher, so it’s not exactly the
Rams or nothing.

Will the Cardinals be searching for their fourth defensive
coordinator under Ken Whisenhunt? It’s possible, but this
would be the first time because of a coach’s success,
rather than failure. And while that would no doubt be bad
news for fans of Big Red, it’s also the price that comes
with success.

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