With Arians retiring, the Cardinals’ search for a new head coach begins

Jan 1, 2018, 4:03 PM | Updated: 5:01 pm
Arizona Cardinals general manager Steve Keim watches practice from the seats at University of Phoen...
Arizona Cardinals general manager Steve Keim watches practice from the seats at University of Phoenix Stadium during NFL (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

It was only a matter of time before reports started to speculate who the Arizona Cardinals would target as the next head coach following Bruce Arians’ decision to retire on Monday.

NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported that the team had put in a request to interview Minnesota Vikings offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur.

In 1999, Shurmur, 52, landed his first NFL coaching job in Philadelphia. Spending 10 seasons with the Eagles as a tight ends coach and quarterbacks coach, Shurmur worked with Pro Bowlers Chad Lewis (TE) and Donovan McNabb (QB), who excelled under his tutelage.

After serving as offensive coordinator of the St. Louis Rams from 2009 to 2010, Shurmur got his first NFL head coaching job with the Cleveland Browns, posting a 9-23 record in two seasons. After 2012, he headed back to Philadelphia as the offensive coordinator under then-head coach Chip Kelly.

Shurmur was victorious in one game as the Eagles interim head coach after Kelly’s departure in 2015.

In 2016, Shurmur took over the interim offensive coordinator duties for nine games in Minnesota before he was named the Vikings offensive coordinator for the 2017 season.

Along with Shurmur, the Cardinals have reportedly requested interviews with New England Patriots’ defensive coordinator Matt Patricia and linebackers coach Brian Flores.

Flores, 36, played safety and linebacker at Boston College from 1999 to 2003 before joining New England’s scouting department after college. He was a Patriots scouting assistant and later a pro scout before becoming a coach.

He worked with the special teams and offense from 2008-10 and was named defensive assistant in 2011. He made the jump to safeties coach for four years before eventually being named the linebackers coach in 2016.

Patricia, 43, is another name out of New England that has been linked to the Cardinals.

He spent six seasons in college before making the leap to the NFL. His first job with the team was as a coaching assistant in 2004. He spent the following season as an assistant offensive line coach before going back to the defensive side of the ball where he spent five seasons as the team’s linebackers coach  and one as the safeties coach.

In 2012, he was named defensive coordinator, helping the Patriots lock down two Super Bowl victories in the process.

Reports also indicate that Eagles John DeFilippo is another name to keep tabs on in regards to the head coaching vacancy.

DeFilippo, 39, has reportedly been on Keim’s radar for some time, according to Rapoport.

He got his first coaching action when he was in college as a summer coaching intern for both the Carolina Panthers (1997) and the Indianapolis Colts (1998).

In 2012, he was hired on as a quarterbacks coach for the Oakland Raiders. DeFilippo helped quarterback Derek Carr in 2014, his rookie season, as he led all rookies in passing yards, passing touchdowns and completions.

DeFilippo was hired as an offensive coordinator by the Browns in 2015 but left the following year, becoming the Eagles quarterback coach. Under his coaching, quarterback Carson Wentz posted rookie franchise records in completion percentage, passing touchdowns, and passing yards.

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With Arians retiring, the Cardinals’ search for a new head coach begins