ARIZONA CARDINALS

Cardinals promote assistants Sean Kugler and Cam Turner, hire Jefferson

Jan 25, 2021, 3:04 PM
Offensive lineman Justin Murray #71 of the Arizona Cardinals with offensive line coach Sean Kugler ...
Offensive lineman Justin Murray #71 of the Arizona Cardinals with offensive line coach Sean Kugler during the second half of the NFL football game against the Cleveland Browns at State Farm Stadium on December 15, 2019 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images)
(Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images)

Head coach Kliff Kingsbury has raved about the insight and game-planning help he’s received from offensive line coach Sean Kugler, and the Arizona Cardinals on Monday rewarded their assistant coach with a promotion to become run game coordinator.

Kugler, who still holds the offensive line coach title, earned a step up the coaching ladder along with Cam Turner, who becomes quarterbacks coach after serving as assistant QB coach last year. Turner was an offensive assistant in 2018.

The Cardinals also on Monday officially named Shawn Jefferson as receivers coach. His and Turner’s hires had already been reported.

Jefferson takes over for David Raih, who was reportedly fired as the receivers other than newcomer DeAndre Hopkins struggled to produce this past season.

Turner steps in for the retired Tom Clements. The long-time NFL coach served the past two seasons as Kingsbury’s pass game coordinator and quarterbacks coach.

Kugler has been an assistant in the NFL with Detroit (2001-05), Buffalo (2007-09), Pittsburgh (2010-12) and Denver (2018). He was head coach at UTEP from 2013-17.

The announcement of Kugler’s promotion — Arizona did not previously have a run game coordinator — leaves the Cardinals without a pass game coordinator or an offensive coordinator. That structure sticking for the season would not be surprising with Kingsbury already the play-caller.

It likely doesn’t change much in terms of coordinating the rushing attack, which Kugler was already heavily involved in.

“When it comes to the run game or protections, I’m one of those guys who knows what he doesn’t know,” Kingsbury said last offseason. “I don’t try to go there with Coach Kugs because he’s kind of a run game savant. He’s one of the top O-line coaches in the league, if not the best.

“He comes with great ideas, I’ll try to pair some stuff up. If I see something I like or I want to try to do something, he’s been awesome at trying to accommodate me.”

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