Cardinals’ Michael Bidwill reportedly mulling in-house options

Jan 7, 2023, 4:57 PM | Updated: Jan 9, 2023, 8:37 am
Owner Michael Bidwill of the Arizona Cardinals before the NFL game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers...
Owner Michael Bidwill of the Arizona Cardinals before the NFL game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at State Farm Stadium on December 25, 2022 in Glendale, Arizona. The Buccaneers defeated the Cardinals 19-16 in overtime. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

The Arizona Cardinals’ dubious 2022 season ends on Sunday, and it is decision time for owner Michael Bidwill on the direction of his team.

After signing head coach Kliff Kingsbury, general manager Steve Keim and defensive coordinator Vance Joseph to contract extensions last offseason, Bidwill faces the choice of building around quarterback Kyler Murray with a different leadership group.

Sports Illustrated insider Albert Breer and NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport report that in-house options could be Bidwill’s solution, both if Kingsbury leaves and if Keim does not return from a health-related leave.

According to Breer:

Things remain in flux in Arizona. GM Steve Keim remains on a health-related leave and his future with the team is up in the air (I wouldn’t rule out him sticking in some capacity after his leave), and word is that owner Michael Bidwill is strongly considering promoting VP of player personnel Quentin Harris and VP of pro scouting Adrian Wilson into GM roles in a co-GM type of setup (those two are filling in for Keim on an interim basis now). As for Kingsbury, everything appears to be on the table—a firing, a negotiated exit or a fifth season in the desert. If Kingsbury’s gone, I’d expect Joseph to be a lead candidate, if not the lead candidate to replace him.

Rapoport added Sunday that Bidwill has not informed Kingsbury of any decisions, as the coach mentioned this week.

But the owner has done “information gathering” to determine if he’ll make any sweeping changes.

Per Rapoport:

Among the potential candidates if there’s a change: former Saints head coach Sean Payton, who a source says has done homework on the Arizona job in case it comes open but wouldn’t come cheap; and Cardinals defensive coordinator Vance Joseph, the former Broncos head coach who is highly respected in the building.

Joseph went 11-21 as Denver Broncos head coach in 2017-18 before joining Kingsbury’s staff.

NBC’s Mike Florio further adds that the Saints, who have reportedly been in talks with the Denver Broncos about draft compensation for that team to add Payton, expect the Cardinals could be interested in the former coach as well.

Harris and Wilson could be candidates to replace Keim currently, Rapoport adds.

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