Arizona Cardinals: Todd Haley May Return to Cards Sideline in 2012

Shaun ChurchContributor IJanuary 6, 2012

Haley with Kurt Warner during a game in 2007
Haley with Kurt Warner during a game in 2007Kevin Terrell/Getty Images

Per Kent Somers of, the Arizona Cardinals are expected to talk with former Kansas City Chiefs head coach Todd Haley about returning to the team.

Haley was the team’s offensive coordinator under head coach Ken Whisenhunt in 2007 and 2008, and in that time—with Kurt Warner under center—the Cardinals went 17-15 in the regular season.

Arizona won consecutive NFC West titles in 2008 and 2009, with a trip to Super Bowl XLIII after the 2008 season. Haley left to coach the Chiefs after the Super Bowl, but much of his offense was in use in 2009 with Whisenhunt serving as the OC.

Speculation is rampant as to what title Haley would garner should he return, however you can bet that should he accept a position with the team, it would be the same one he had before leaving to head the Chiefs.

This subject has been on the lips and keyboards of fans since the minute Haley was relieved of his duties in KC. Whisenhunt was even asked about the possibility of his return after the fact and said it was “premature” to answer questions about it.

Now, though, it seems that time has come.

It is unknown what would have to happen with the coaching staff should he be added, but if he returns, it could spell the end of current offensive coordinator Mike Miller’s tenure in the desert.

In 2006, the year before Haley took over the OC position in Arizona, the Cardinals’ offense ranked No. 18 with 312.5 total yards per game.

His first year at the helm saw the offense improve to No. 12 with 344.1 YPG.

It was even better in the Super Bowl year, 2008. Kurt Warner’s first full season as the starter may have helped, but the offense was flying high all season, ranking No. 4 in total offense at 365.8 YPG.

The unit slipped some in the year after Haley left, but they still finished at 10-6, winning the division for the second consecutive season.

A return to prominence is inevitable for Arizona with the defense being groomed to punish. Having Haley back on staff to run the offense would make the team instant contenders not only in the NFC West, but for the NFC crown in the playoffs.