The last team in the NFL with a head coaching vacancy has announced that the position has been filled.
The Arizona Cardinals officially hired Bruce Arians formerly of the Indianapolis Colts as the team’s new head coach on Friday according to Chuck Schilken of the L.A. Times:
Bruce Arians was announced Thursday night as the new head coach of the Arizona Cardinals. This season he served as offensive coordinator for the Indianapolis Colts but also filled in as interim head coach while his boss, Chuck Pagano, underwent treatment for leukemia.
Arians was one of the names circulating around the league and linked to many different head coaching vacancies. Once the more attractive opportunities with the Philadelphia Eagles and Chicago Bears were off the table with the hirings of Chip Kelly and Marc Trestman, Arians was linked to the open positions with the Jacksonville Jaguars and Arizona Cardinals.
Following the hiring of Gus Bradley with the Jaguars, Arians was the leading candidate for the Cardinals’ job.
Although the 2012 NFL season got off to a rough start for Arians by being thrust into a prominent role with the Colts due to the illness of head coach Chuck Pagano, Arians thrived with the added pressure and responsibility in Indianapolis.
As a result of Arians’ success taking over for Pagano for the majority of the season, the offensive coordinator is actually a candidate for NFL Coach of the Year. Arians helped the Colts get back on track following the news surrounding Pagano’s illness and was able to do it with a rookie quarterback in Andrew Luck and the team parting ways with the former face of the franchise in four-time NFL MVP Peyton Manning.
Arians will take over a Cardinals team that the season with a 5-11 record and a lot of questions surrounding the future of the franchise moving forward.