ARIZONA CARDINALS

Arizona Cardinals fire head coach Steve Wilks after one year

Dec 31, 2018, 9:09 AM | Updated: 11:55 am
Arizona Cardinals head coach Steve Wilks watches his team during the first half of an NFL football ...
Arizona Cardinals head coach Steve Wilks watches his team during the first half of an NFL football game against the Denver Broncos, Thursday, Oct. 18, 2018, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ralph Freso)
(AP Photo/Ralph Freso)

Steve Wilks’ tenure in Arizona has come to an end.

The Arizona Cardinals fired their head coach Monday, the team announced. An earlier report from NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport said Wilks had informed his staff that he wouldn’t return for the 2019 season.

Wilks, 49, just finished his first season as the Cardinals’ coach and signed a four-year contract in January. He replaced Bruce Arians, who opted for retirement after an 8-8 season last year.

Wilks’ brief time in Arizona was tumultuous.

Arizona was 3-13 and suffered nine double-digit losses under Wilks.

The Cardinals lost their first four games of the season and started 1-6 before firing offensive coordinator Mike McCoy. They managed just 13 points per game under McCoy and suffered four double-digit losses before replacing the coordinator with quarterbacks coach Byron Leftwich on Oct. 19.

Less than a week later, franchise cornerstone Patrick Peterson reportedly asked to be traded.

Wilks said the Cardinals wouldn’t trade Peterson, and the cornerback reaffirmed his commitment to the team two days after word of his dissatisfaction leaked. But it proved to be another distraction for an organization looking for stability following the retirement of Arians and former starting quarterback Carson Palmer in the offseason heading into 2018.

There wasn’t much improvement following McCoy’s departure and after the Peterson saga.

The Cardinals defeated the San Francisco 49ers for the second time before their bye week, then resumed their freefall.

They lost to the Kansas City Chiefs before suffering a pair of losses that did nothing to help Wilks’ chances.

First, the Cardinals lost at home to an under-manned, one-win Oakland Raiders squad on a last-second field goal. A week later, they let Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers set an NFL record with 25 straight completions to the begin what ended as a 45-10 defeat.

An impressive road win over the Green Bay Packers was negated a week later when the Cardinals flopped in a 17-3 home loss to the last-place Detroit Lions.

Arizona followed up the Lions loss with another poor performance against a last-place team, falling 40-14 to the Atlanta Falcons on the road.

Wilks’ final home game as the Cardinals’ head coach was a 31-9 loss to the Rams.

He finished his Cardinals’ career with a 27-24 road loss to the Seahawks.

Life Changer Loans
Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson warms up before an NFL football game against the Arizona Cardinals, Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren) Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson warms up before an NFL football game against the Arizona Cardinals, Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren) Arizona Cardinals quarterback Josh Rosen warms up before an NFL football game against the Seattle Seahawks, Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018, in Seattle. (AP Photo/John Froschauer) The Seattle Seahawks live mascot Taima, an augur hawk, lands on her handler's fist after leading flag bearers out of the tunnel before the first half of an NFL football game against the Arizona Cardinals, Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren) Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson (3) passes against the Arizona Cardinals during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren) Arizona Cardinals quarterback Josh Rosen drops back to pass against the Seattle Seahawks during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren) Arizona Cardinals quarterback Josh Rosen, left, passes as Seattle Seahawks' Quinton Jefferson (99) moves in during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018, in Seattle. (AP Photo/John Froschauer) Arizona Cardinals' David Amerson (38) intercepts the ball in front of Seattle Seahawks' David Moore during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018, in Seattle. (AP Photo/John Froschauer) Seattle Seahawks' Shaquill Griffin (26) watches the path of Arizona Cardinals' Zane Gonzalez's (5) field goal as Cardinals holder Andy Lee (2) looks on during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018, in Seattle. (AP Photo/John Froschauer) Seattle Seahawks' Shaquill Griffin, left, tackles Arizona Cardinals' David Johnson during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren) Arizona Cardinals quarterback Josh Rosen, left, passes as Seattle Seahawks' Quinton Jefferson (99) moves in during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018, in Seattle. (AP Photo/John Froschauer) Seattle Seahawks' Tyler Lockett (16) flips his way into the end zone on a 29-yard touchdown reception against the Arizona Cardinals during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018, in Seattle. (AP Photo/John Froschauer) Seattle Seahawks' Chris Carson (32) dives into the end zone for a touchdown past Arizona Cardinals' Antoine Bethea during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren) Arizona Cardinals' Larry Fitzgerald (11) just misses a catch in front of Seattle Seahawks' Justin Coleman during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren) Arizona Cardinals quarterback Josh Rosen drops back to pass against the Seattle Seahawks during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren) Arizona Cardinals' Larry Fitzgerald, left, snags a one-handed touchdown pass against the Seattle Seahawks during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018, in Seattle. (AP Photo/John Froschauer) Arizona Cardinals' Deone Bucannon, right, sacks Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018, in Seattle. (AP Photo/John Froschauer) Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, left, is sacked by Arizona Cardinals' Chandler Jones, right, during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 30, 2018, in Seattle. (AP Photo/John Froschauer)

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