A timeline of the Arizona Cardinals head coaching interviews
The Arizona Cardinals started their head coaching search Wednesday and have lined up a number of potential coaching candidates over the next few days.
Their first interview started with a familiar face.
Wednesday, 1/3 – Arizona Cardinals defensive coordinator James Bettcher
The 39-year-old Bettcher started in the NFL with the Colts in 2012 as the outside linebackers coach. He came with Arians to Arizona in 2013, serving as outside linebackers coach for two years before being promoted to defensive coordinator in 2015.
Arizona has been in the top-seven for yards allowed in all three of Bettcher’s years running the defense.
After meeting with Arizona’s defensive coordinator James Bettcher on Wednesday, the Cardinals front office headed out of state with five more interviews lined up.
Thursday, 1/4 – Minnesota Vikings offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur
Considered a hot candidate by NFL insider John Clayton, Shurmur brings an offensive mind to the team. He got his first crack at coaching in 1999 as Philadelphia’s quarterbacks/tight ends coach. Former quarterback Donovan McNabb had his best season under Shurmur as he threw for 31 touchdowns and just eight interceptions in 2004.
He got his first head coaching opportunity with the Cleveland Browns where he went 9-23 before heading back to the Eagles where he helped Nick Foles flourish. In 2016, he took over as interim offensive coordinator for the Minnesota Vikings before being named offensive coordinator for the 2017 season where the Vikings are currently a No. 2 seed in the NFC.
Following Shurmur’s interview, the search continues to Philadelphia.
Friday, 1/5 (Afternoon) – Philadelphia Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz
The 51-year-old Schwartz went 29-51 as the head coach of the Detroit Lions from 2009-2013. In his second year as defensive coordinator in Philadelphia, the team is ranked second in the NFC in both total yards and points allowed. The Cardinals and Giants are two teams that have requested an interview, per reports.
Friday, 1/5 (Evening) – Philadelphia Eagles quarterbacks coach John DeFilippo
DeFilippo, 39, has reportedly been on general manager Steve Keim’s radar for some time, according to Ian Rapoport. He has been the quarterbacks coach in Oakland working with Derek Carr before spending one year as the offensive coordinator of the Browns. His most recent work with Carson Wentz in Philadelphia has him as one of the hotter coaching names in the league.
Up next for the Cardinals is traveling to New England for two more interviews.
Saturday, 1/6 – New England Patriots defensive coordinator Matt Patricia
Patricia has two Super Bowl rings to his name as the defensive coordinator of the Patriots since 2012. The Cardinals, Lions and Giants all are reportedly looking to interview the 43-year-old, who first started with the Patriots as an offensive assistant in 2004 before coaching the linebackers and safeties.
Saturday 1/6 – New England Patriots linebackers coach Brian Flores
Flores has been with the Patriots since 2004. Working all the way up like Patricia from a scouting assistant at the age of 23 to the safeties coach in 2012, Flores spent four seasons with the safeties. The Cardinals, who NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport said will meet with Flores on Saturday, are reportedly the only team to request an interview with the Patriots’ linebackers coach the past two seasons.
The Cardinals then finish up their sixth interview in Pittsburgh.
Sunday, 1/7 – Pittsburgh Steelers offensive line coach Mike Munchak
Known for his time as a nine-time Pro Bowl offensive lineman for the Houston Oilers, Munchak has been Pittsburgh’s offensive line coach since 2014. The 57-year-old had one head coaching gig in the NFL with the Titans from 2011-2013. The team went 22-26.
As of Tuesday afternoon, the Cardinals are the only team reportedly linked to pursuing Munchak for an interview. Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin said Tuesday the team gave Munchak permission to have the interview.