After 11 years in Arizona, outgoing coach Freddie Kitchens thanks Cards

Jan 24, 2018, 11:00 AM | Updated: 11:01 am
Arizona Cardinals quarterbacks coach Freddie Kitchens, left, talks with quarterbacks including Drew...
Arizona Cardinals quarterbacks coach Freddie Kitchens, left, talks with quarterbacks including Drew Stanton (5) at NFL football training camp practice on Monday, Aug. 5, 2013, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

After team president Michael Bidwill and general manager Steve Keim, few had seen the Arizona Cardinals grow as a franchise like Freddie Kitchens.

The outgoing running backs coach was named the Cleveland Browns’ running backs coach and associate head coach on Wednesday.

As he heads to Cleveland to work under former Cardinals offensive coordinator Todd Haley, Kitchens first released a statement reflecting on his 11 seasons in the desert and thanking his coworkers, fans and players.

Kitchens’ time with the Cardinals bridged the Ken Whisenhunt and Bruce Arians eras.

He coached tight ends for the first six years (2007-12) in Arizona, including their Super Bowl XLIII berth. Kitchens, a former Alabama Crimson Tide quarterback, spent 2013-16 as quarterbacks coach, playing a part in helping Carson Palmer break single-season team records in passing yards (4,671), touchdowns (35) and passing rating (104.6) during the 2015 season.

Kitchens became the Cardinals’ running backs coach for 2017, replacing departed Stump Mitchell as Arians promoted coaching intern Byron Leftwich to quarterbacks coach.

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After 11 years in Arizona, outgoing coach Freddie Kitchens thanks Cards