Arizona Cardinals

Bruce Arians: Former Colts Interim Coach Is Perfect Choice for Cardinals Job

KANSAS CITY, MO - DECEMBER 23:  Interim head coach Bruce Arians jogs off the field following the game against the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium on December 23, 2012 in Kansas City, Missouri.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
Jamie Squire/Getty Images
Rob GoldbergFeatured ColumnistJanuary 18, 2013

The Arizona Cardinals looked at a lot of options for its new head coach. Fortunately, the organization made the right choice by hiring Bruce Arians.

ESPN's Adam Schefter first reported the news of the hire via Twitter:

Bruce Arians has accepted four-year deal, with a team option for a fifth year, as head coach with Arizona Cardinals.

— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) January 18, 2013

Arians came into notoriety this season after taking over as interim coach for the Indianapolis Colts. He replaced Chuck Pagano when the head coach was diagnosed with leukemia.

During the time he was in charge of the team, Indianapolis won nine of its 12 games. This was not only the most games an interim coach has ever won, but it was truly remarkable considering that the squad had only won two games the entire year before.

He helped the team that drafted No. 1 overall in the offseason reach the playoffs the next season, making him a legitimate candidate for Coach of the Year.

However, despite all of this success, he was available until today. Arizona truly lucked out in this situation.

It is difficult to tell how a positional coach or coordinator would fare as a head coach in the NFL. Many of the greatest technical minds in the sport fail as leaders due to poor game management, poor preparation, lack of ability to motivate or a number of other reasons.

In 12 games, Arians proved his ability to accomplish all of these things. He had a legitimate audition in the top spot and he passed with flying colors.

The situation was unusual. An inexperienced head coach had to take over for a 1-2 team that was going through an emotional moment without much time for preparation. Arians not only kept his team together but they thrived on the field.

His ability to handle adversity proves that he will be able to succeed as a full-time NFL head coach.

Of course, Arians has accomplished more than just being a leader. He is also a great offensive mind. 

Indianapolis finished No. 10 in the NFL this season in total yards behind a rookie quarterback, a rookie running back, a rookie wide receiver and a couple of rookie tight ends.

Prior to this season, he led the Pittsburgh Steelers to the top half of the NFL in total yards as coordinator in each of the last three years. He was also able to show some diversity, leading the offense with a strong rushing attack some years, but having a good passing offense in others.

Arians' value was also shown in the playoffs. The coordinator was unable to appear at the game because he was hospitalized in the morning. As a result, the offense only scoring nine points in a loss to the Baltimore Ravens.

The Cardinals need a lot of help offensively. The offense finished dead last in total yards and finished above only the Kansas City Chiefs in points scored.

While a lack of talent has something to do with this, Arians will certainly be able to help many problems due to his superior schemes.

Add this to his proven ability to lead a team when the odds are stacked against them and you have a recipe for an outstanding coach at the NFL level.

Arizona made the right choice in hiring Bruce Arians to be the next head coach. 

 

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