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What’s next for coaching staff

Posted by Darren Urban on January 7, 2011 – 12:03 pm

As coach Ken Whisenhunt was wrapping up his end-of-the-season press conference, he was asked if he was going to have any down time soon.

“I am going to need a break here at some point but I don’t see one on the near horizon right now,” Whisenhunt said.

Definitely no time soon. With the rest of the coaching staff getting a break for the next week or so, Whisenhunt is back in his office working on the future, which presumably includes the replacement for the fired Bill Davis at defensive coordinator. I’ve been asked many times already who it will be or who is in the mix. Right now, I don’t know. I am sure Whisenhunt has an idea what direction he’d like to go in — head coaches always have a fluid “who’s next” list — but as he said Thursday night, whether those guys would be available/interested is a different story.

So that leave speculation. I have heard a lot of suggestions by the rank-and-file fans out there: John Fox, Eric Mangini, Packers LB coach Kevin Greene, Steelers LB coach Keith Butler (with whom Whisenhunt has had interest in the past). But I have not heard any suggestions from Whisenhunt, and in the end, there is always a wait-and-see for assistant coaches anyway, since it’s harder to get them away from other teams if they are already under contract.

I will be curious to see if the coach recruited has been a 3-4 or 4-3 guy. Whisenhunt has talked about the difficulty in installing a new philosophy with a change in DC with the very real possibility of an offseason-ruining lockout. If part of the problem this season was putting the new pieces (player-wise) in place and that was a season-long struggle, what happens when the prep time is drastically cut down?

(A quick aside: one thing I found interesting talking to Ron Wolfley on our season-ending podcast — to be posted Monday– was when he broke down the Cards’ use of the 4-3 late in the season as opposed to the 3-4. It was the exact same defense, Wolfley said, except that instead of an outside linebacker standing up on the right side, the Cards were using a defensive end with a hand down — Campbell, for instance, instead of Porter/Schofield. Everyone else played the same roles as before).

I guess we will see how it goes. I expect some potential candidate names to leak out next week (they always do) and we will see how this plays out. Whisenhunt said yesterday he isn’t ruling out further coaching changes but said that doesn’t mean he expects any. I read that as a nod to whomever the new DC is, and whether he might want to make some moves with the defensive staff. I expect the offensive staff to stay intact, barring someone leaving on his own for a different job.


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132 Responses to “What’s next for coaching staff”

  1. By Catcher Freeman on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Rob Ryan

  2. By Don't Take Losses on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Keen insight from Wolfley.

  3. By Don't Take Losses on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    PS: Darren…comments not intended as personal. Learned that if we get in pit, hard to get tar off…your efforts greatly appreciated and agree you need not speculate.

  4. By Frustrated on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Hi Darren!

    Question for you. Do you think the change in the ruling on helmet to helmet contact and the increasing severity of fines played a role in declining level of playt of Adrian Wilson?

  5. By Darren Urban on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Don’t Take —

    RE: Twitter

    No worries on your stuff. Just wears on a person. Can’t really get away from it — it’s the job.

  6. By Darren Urban on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Frustrated —

    RE: Wilson

    Wish it were that simple. But no, I don’t think that’s a factor.

  7. By Don't Take Losses on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Calais played his best at end in 4 lineman front, imo. Davis went 5-6 games with us getting gashed. It stopped largely when we put the beef in the lineup. Seemed a no brainer…we had 7-8 down lineman but 3-5 LBs. Wonder why Whiz didn’t override DC sooner (if in fact he did). Also, Cards got a lot more creative last 3-4 games on D, played a lot better. If Whiz took charge sooner, Davis might have been salvageable?

  8. By Mike Ellingboe on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Did Wolfley make mention of the effectiveness of having the DE lined up there instead of the OLB? From the outside looking in, it appeared to help our pass rush and run D pretty significantly (at least until we decided to take the second half of the 49’er game off).

    Regardless, I wouldn’t expect a switch back to the 4-3 unless they really don’t think they can find the DC to make it work. Your previous point of putting Schofield’s role in flux was a good one as well. Just tell to them come up with something to stop the opposition from roaming the field on us ;)

  9. By NJCardsFan on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Darren,

    Do you think there is a possibility of the Cards switching back to a 4-3? I know the hiring of the new DC will have an impact on that, but I think that the lack of an outside rush and inconsistent pressure on opposing QBs is directly attributed to the 3-4. Its not like we’re rushing James Harrison or Terrell Suggs. Haggans and Porter and Schoefield are just too small to be taking on these huge 300 lb tackles. All season long I watched them get smooshed trying to rush off the edge. I think that played a huge role in Wilson’s down year and even DRC’s. No pressure meant more time for QBs to pick apart the secondary. What are your thoughts ??

  10. By Phoenixraven1 on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    I’m intrigued by the Mangini possibility…

  11. By MikeG on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Hey Darren–I’m surprised and not surprised by the Davis move. I guess it makes sense to some degree-but this was one of those years where nothing went right. To me there was no identity established on either side of the ball. What did the 2010 Card’s find out about themselves??? I don’t know!! What did they do really well?? Was there a bread and butter play that they developed and relied on. I saw no real progression. I still think we need to go to fundamentals and focus on developing our running game. I know it is a throwing league but it is so important to run–it eats up time,shows control of the football and wears down defenses. At this point it will be interesting to see who the DC will be. I would like to see more of a veteran guy!!! Also Darren –I think that Cody Brown draft choice really hurt our defense. That high of a pick has to be a real contributor to the defense. I think we need to draft 2 or 3 LB’s in this draft. What do you think???

  12. By Todd on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Darren, I am sorry but if Whisenhunt doesn’t consider replacing Russ Grimm as well, this should be a major story for you! How can Whisenhunt justify the last place running offense in the NFL and poor pass blocking all season yet still keep the coach that has been in charge of it the past 4 years? So you fire the guy who has only been in charge of a low rated defense after two seasons but not the guy responsible for the worst, I said WORST, rushing offense in the NFL??! How is this acceptance of mediocrity or better yet, less than mediocrity accepted in this organization? Would Jerry Jones allow a 4 year worst rushing offensive line coach to stay? Unbelievable!

    I can tell you by multiple posts I have seen from Cardinals faithful that if Grimm is not replaced and a full time offensive coordinator is not brought in, the Cardinals are going to have some serious fan revolt.

    And if you do not report on this as the big story it should be, it shows you are being a homer reporter for the team. Please do your job and report on this large issue as it should be. I loved Grimm as a player but facts don’t lie. He has failed and has the worst offensive rushing game in the NFL and near the same against the pass. A change must be made.

    Please do the right thing and keep this front and center before everyone starts cancelling their season tickets.

  13. By Chad on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Darren, was there any noticeable production difference when the same personnel played the 3-4 or 4-3?

    If 4-3 works better with our personnel, isn’t the wise decision to play to the strengths of your players opposed to trying to fit a square peg in a round hole?

  14. By Pete on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    So much focus is now on the defense, with the search for a new DC getting underway, but the main focus should be and remain on the offense, namely at the QB position, which is what really hurt the Card’s this year. Even under a relatively substandard DC, the defense kept the team in a number of games they lost, making plays left and right, and even being instrumental in a number of the few wins. But as good as they were at times, they were rarely, if ever, given any real help from the offense, mostly because of the QB’s playing that day. Think Seattle, Tampa Bay, or Minnesota. The main focus of the offseason should be a determination of the QB spot, whether to stick withwhat the team has (please, don’t!), sign a viable veteran (maybe the best option for short-term success), or draft a QB high (call 2011 another growing season, at the very least). After all, what good will anything else prove to be when the offense turns the ball over multiple times a game, can’t sustain enough drives to remain in the game, and just doesn’t get the job done on its side of the ball? That sort of offense will almost always make any defense look bad, period!

  15. By justcardinalfan on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    darren

    what about mike singletary he sure could help us out in the D

  16. By aitchem on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Sounds like treason, I know, but I hope Russ Grimm is one of those “offerees”. Maybe he’ll be a good head coach – if he’s able to delegate to good people. I like him, he knows the game, he’s got a great history as a player. But that doesn’t mean he can manage a system or teach. He’s in charge of two things: OL and the running game. Both were so bad (and have been every year) that I’d bet they even affected the D’s performance. How can defensive players keep themselves intense and focused, when they know that when they give the O the ball, nothing will come of it? No wonder 9-0 and Wilson and the others had an off year.

    I know Grimm has been deified here, but far as I’m concerned it’s not deserved.

  17. By Kent on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Really Darren? There were times specifically in the MNF game vs SF that Wilson came up fast into the hole and then stopped and waiting to make a form tackle rather than going for the hit. It seemed as if he was really worried about making helmet/helmet contact or leading with his head.

    The 6 yard TD scamper Westbrook had illustrates this perfectly.

    Onto the DC job. Honestly the 3 best 34 coach names out there to me would be Butler, Matt Patricia and Pepper Johnson. Whis had a tendency to hire guys who he has worked with in the past, so that would give a nod to Butler IF he wants the job. But the other two are both young upcoming coaches.

    Regardless it is going to be an interesting couple of weeks.
    I assume if you mention any names to Whis you will get the “I am not discussing that” or the “There are a lot of names in contention” response.

  18. By LadyCard04 on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    I personally think we need a new O-line coordinator – or a new and effective o-line. They have consistenly been bad for the last several years. Warner said he would still be playing if he had the Patriot’s o-line in front of him. All of our qb’s this year took way too many hits (some caused by themselves) but way too many by the o-line. Also, they didn’t seem to hold up and let our backs run.

  19. By Ellis on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Lets be real if the players don’t buy into the system the cardinals defensive will be same as always. People stop praising Kerry Rhodes too, he thinks he can just hit people with his shoulder instead of tackling. They need to go back to the fundamentals and learn how to wrap up. DRC needs to understand he cant keep giving cushion and think he wont get shredded. Wilson needs to wrap up too. I would go back to the 4-3 defensive because we don’t have the linebackers for a 3-4 defensive. People stop thinking they will put Wilson at linebacker, it wont happen. People are saying that coach is afraid to hire smarter coordinators than him, because he mite be in jeopardy of losing his job to one of them. I think he is bright and don’t believe he thinks this way at all. I think he should get a offensive coordinator though soon and bring in another elite wide receiver so that Fitz can see the ball more. We need a to sure up our o-line so that we can get some holes for the rb and the passing game can develop. Also, Wells and Hightower stop dancing the hell around and push the line even if you don’t see a hole spin out and go hard outside. Doucet needs to be let go and cut Derek Anderson already.

    Darren, what does it take to have a job like yours in the future?
    Also, what do you think about bringing in another elite wide receiver?

  20. By Steve on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Are there any plans to hire an offensive coordinator to relieve Whiz of playcalling duties and allow him to focus solely on head coaching duties?

  21. By D on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Okay, I’ll put my resume in for DC. Just let me draft R. Quinn, draft a nickle corner, let me bring in T. Spikes and D. Harris. And get Dockett, Wilson, DRC and Campbell to play up to norm.
    I know I am being a smart ***, but it does take players to be effective, B. Davis did have some constraints this year..

  22. By Darren Urban on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    NJCards —

    RE: Defensive scheme

    Like you said, I think it depends on the DC. But I think you have valid points.

  23. By Darren Urban on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    MikeG —

    RE: Cody Brown

    Anytime you miss on a pick in the first three rounds, in my opinion, it hurts. Especially for a team that wants to build with the draft and avoid the huge names in free agency.

  24. By Darren Urban on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Chad —

    RE: Defensive production

    I don’t have any numbers on that breakdown of 4-3 v 3-4 (Plus the opponents at the end of the year when they started using 4-3 more were appreciably weaker).

    As for your second point, that is something that has to be considered, certainly.

  25. By Darren Urban on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    justcardinalfan —

    RE: Singletary

    As I have mentioned before, I don’t see him as a fit.

  26. By Darren Urban on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Ellis —

    RE: Job/WR

    You sure you want this job?

    As for an “elite” wide receiver, you’re not turning down players, but at the same time, it’s not going to be a priority given the many other holes.

  27. By Darren Urban on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Steve, everyone —

    RE: OC

    Does no one read what I write? Or is it so disappointing everyone ignores it?

    From the blog above:
    “I expect the offensive staff to stay intact, barring someone leaving on his own for a different job.”

  28. By D.Burban on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    You guys are dreaming, this is the Cardinals. We are about to get another noname assisstant as our DC. Money is more important than winning. They won’t spend the money to get anybody that is proven. It will never ever happen.

  29. By D.Burban on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    By Darren Urban on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply
    Steve, everyone –
    RE: OC
    Does no one read what I write? Or is it so disappointing everyone ignores it?
    From the blog above:
    “I expect the offensive staff to stay intact, barring someone leaving on his own for a different job.”

    WELL THAT IS A HUGE MISTAKE!

  30. By D.Burban on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    By Darren Urban on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply
    Steve, everyone –
    RE: OC
    Does no one read what I write? Or is it so disappointing everyone ignores it?
    From the blog above:
    “I expect the offensive staff to stay intact, barring someone leaving on his own for a different job.”

    THAT MAKES AS MUCH SENSE AS BRINGING IN DA AND MAKING HIM THE STARTING QB! IS THIS WHAT WE HAVE TO LOOK FORWARD TO, ANOTHER YEAR OF THESE DECISIONS.

  31. By Darthcard on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Darren I know others have asked but when I saw Dan Henning was released in Miami I instantly thought Whiz must be begging for his mentor and one time head coach to come on board? D is it possible?

  32. By Darren Urban on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Darthcard —

    RE: Henning

    As what? There is already an assistant head coach.

  33. By Todd on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Darren, so I take it your non response and passing over my above post directed to you about Coach Grimm means you are dismissing my point? Ok, I get the picture.

    I must say I am really amazed at the continued coddling of Russ Grimm by the Cardinals organization, the coaching staff, the Cardinal announcers and now it seems the staff reporters. It’s like because the guy was a great lineman in his day, was Whiz’s buddy at Pitt, is in the HOF, that loyalty to him has no boundaries and his poor performance as the leader of the worst or near the worst rushing attack in the NFL for 4 years has no consequences. No response from you at least on what justifies “them leaving the offensive coaching staff intact” as you put it without any questioning by you of them on such a clearly moronic decision as the reporter covering the Cards for the fans?

    Whis seems to be in such denial that he actually publicly said that Grimm should be a candidate for a head coaching job. Really? Are you kidding coach? What teams are in the market for a head coach that sports a 4 year bottom offensive line record in the NFL?

    Another guy here on this thread asks you about replacing the offensive coordinator and you dismiss him as well with a snippy “does no one read what I write” response which I am sure was also directed at me. Unbelievable and thank you for proving my point. Sorry master Urban. We forgot you are really the reincarnation of Jim Murray and how dare we question you to expand on explaining “what you write”, when you offer no explanation on an extremely controversial decision that the far majority of Cardinal fans do not support.

    Ok but don’t say I didn’t warn you guys about how the fans will respond to that. Sweep it under the table and keep coddling Grimm and his ineptness as a coach.

  34. By Ellis on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Yeah, Darren i want your job.
    Really what does it take?

    Also, i know we have holes all through the team that needs to be filled.
    People keep asking about the offensive coordinator position because they are
    holding out hope that coach will bring in someone other than what we have.
    So, basically people stop asking and talking about the oc position to Darren.

    Darren, how do you see the CBA playing out?

  35. By Donald on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    So Grimm is safe? Ugh.

    I didn’t think he’d oust his friend, but other than being infatuated with Bruce Springsteen during the Super Bowl halftime, he’s done nothing noteworthy as a coach for this team.

  36. By iLuvBugel on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Everyone makes it so complicated but this past season is easy to explain. If we had a QB that was good and a leader, we win at least 9 games in this awful division and take the West.

    We should have beaten Tampa Bay and Minnesota.
    We should have shown up to play both games against Seattle, and San Francisco.

    With a QB, all that happens and we win the West.

    Period.

  37. By NJAzCardsFan on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Why hasn’t Disaster Always (DA) been released yet???? He is/was just pathetic….

    Darren,
    Are the Cards FO/Whiz going to review their draft process/criteria???.
    They have lost the following top picks over the last years. ( I know some of these were in the pre-Whiz era).
    1) Matt Lienart (1st round)- Released
    2) Buster Davis (3rd round)- Cut
    3) Cody Brown (2nd round)- Cut
    4) Andre Wadsworth (1st round- Bust/Cut)
    5) Levi Brown (Instead of Adrian Peterson)
    The trading down and passing on Terrel Suggs.

  38. By Darren Urban on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Todd —

    RE: My answers

    I chose not to get into it with you. It’s no win for me. I’m not changing your mind.

    I thought moving on from your post and letting you have your say — in which you weren’t really asking a question, mind you — was fair.

    Instead, you want to further rip me personally.

    I dismissed him because he asked about names. I had just written they weren’t expected to change staff. I didn’t talk to Whisenhunt today. I don’t have his reasoning for sticking with offensive staff. I’m sorry if I have done a bad job in your eyes.

    I am not the PR staff, nor am I Whisenhunt’s spokesman. I gather what info I can and write it.

    If people want to debate me, fine. But I’ve had enough of the personal attacks. I am not coach nor GM nor owner. I do my job to the best of my ability. And I will say what I have always said — the threats are just that. If the Cardinals win, everyone will jump back on the bandwagon. If they lose, this coaching staff will be fired.

  39. By Darren Urban on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Ellis —

    RE: CBA

    I wish I knew. I expect a lockout. My hope is that sometime this summer, it can get fixed so that there is adequate time for FA and for training camps to happen as normal. But until we get closer to March 4, it’s hard to know how hard that will be.

  40. By Darren Urban on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    NJAz —

    RE: draft

    Not a good list. But I would bet, if you go over the same time period (back to 1998 it looks like) the vast majority of teams have a similar list.

  41. By Big Red on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Forget Rob Ryan, we don’t need a coach that wants more attention then our Head Coach Whiz. All does Ryan’s are just about them.

  42. By Todd on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Darren I only responded harsh because you ignored my comments that I think most Cardinal fans would like an answer to. If you don’t have an answer then go get it. Do what Kent Somers did. Push these coaches and players to be accountable for their decisions and actions. Who cares if they get mad? The fans are not happy.

    You are a good guy and I don’t mean to rip you but you usually respond to my posts. I have been a loyal blog follower of yours and like your comments when you get a chance on TV and radio. However I think you are doing everyone an injustice if you don’t press the coach and organization on what justifies keeping Coach Grimm with such a poor performance for 4 years.

    Anyway, you are a stand up guy for posting my criticisms and responding. You could have just deleted it and blown me off and you did not. Thank you. We are frustrated because we love this team. I have been with them since 1989 and I cannot take going back to the “same ole Cardinals”. Please help us. You are inside the organization and we are not. The coaches and organization need to know what their fans think and you are our liason. They need to answer why they are not replacing Grimm or any coaches on a pathetic offense. The offensive line was bad even with Warner in there.

    Anyway, take care and again please help us.

    Thanks Darren

  43. By cards62 on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Darren

    Our offense was our weakest link this year in my opinion and the opinion of most fans. Do you agree with this point?

    I am glad our fans are staying on the offensive side of the ball as I feel we must hire a very good offensive coordinator and this will help us land free agent QBs.

    Darren do you or dont you think having a highly respected offensive coordinator will help us land free agent talent at QB and other positions on the offense?

    I have said several times that Russ Grimm must go. The Piglets are not working out, and we seem to have more discipline issues with our O line than any other position group.

    Darren do you think the Cardinals should stand pat on the offensive coaching side or do you think they need to make minor coaching changes – 1 position coach or major offensive coaching changes – new OC and he hires position coaches.

    Thank you for taking the time to read my post and respond.
    Steve

  44. By Cactus Jeff on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Darren,

    Kevin Greene LB coach for the packers passes the eyeball test. Just Kidding! But I do like him. Capers has done great things with the Packers, but a high scoring offense seems to make the defense look good. Finally, was that George Carlin quip from a standup routine or from “Thomas the Train?”

  45. By Jesse Robles on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Harbaugh with the 49ers, Our Offense and Defensive Coordinators better still be in the playoffs!!

  46. By Bill L on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Harbaugh to SF…..and he says they will run the West Coast O. Both of those are pretty good for Matt. The fact that it is the NFC West doesn’t hurt either. Besides McNabb and Kolb, Matt might be as good as they can find….and McNabb and Kolb should be hot properties for several teams. If it came down to Matt or Orton as a possible starter and a for sure backup. I’d take Matt in a heartbeat. McNabb to Tenn, Kolb to Cards and Matt to SF……would make me smile.

  47. By Brad Oneill on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    http://www.azcardinals.com/news-and-events/article-2/Goodells-Letter-To-Fans/3bae906d-e532-4210-a5e5-49d960c2ca0a
    since i cant comment on goodells letter where it is i will comment here.

    Dear Mr. Goodell,
    First of all I want to commend you on your advocacy for player safety. That was a decision that may not have been popular but it is the right thing to do for the long term health of your players. It is my belief that by making the changes in the nfl, they will trickle down and become part of the game for millions of college and high school athletes and that decision will improve the quality of lives for people far beyond the game.
    Second, for the collective bargaining agreement to be a success you have to move through these negotiations without alienating the fans. Please do not talk of the hard times affecting owners and players equally to how they have effected your average fan. The nfl is an entertainment business keep us entertained and you will continue to make millions of dollars.
    How can you blame the rookie salaries on anyone but the owners? Your ownership is the one who chooses to meet the ridiculous demands of these young men and their attorneys. There is something very wrong with Sam Bradford getting a salary anywhere near the one Tom Brady receives.
    Here is my list of “demands” from a fan perspective.
    1. Eliminate game blackouts, These only serve to alienate fans and make it nearly impossible for you to grow the fan base in cities where you have a subpar team. The more exposure a team has the more fans they will develop. We will follow losing teams if we can build a relationship with the players and if our team is blacked out every other Sunday it is very easy to lose interest.

    2. Going to 18 games will require a bigger roster, no one wants to watch a playoff of attrition where the last team that can field a team wins. Eliminating 2 preseason games also greatly reduces the opportunity for new talent to get a legitimate shot at the game. You may have to look at bigger practice squads or an expanded roster. Offsetting some of the revenue gain.

    3. The draft order should be based on the record for the first 12 games of the year. I don’t want any teams having any excuses to not try and win the last games of the year.

    4. New stadiums benefit the owners far more than they benefit anyone else in the city where they are built. Please keep that in mind when your owners stick their hands out demanding a new stadium and threatening to leave whatever city you are holding hostage. If I had my way stadiums would be paid for with a 20% tax on all player salaries on every player in the league. The league would then own the stadiums and could work to turn them into year round income generators. If someone owned all the stadiums in the country they would have advantages in booking revenue generating events all year round.

    5. Take care of the men who played this game back before it meant they would become millionaires. It is disgraceful to hear about some of the old timers getting so little when they contributed so much to the league.

  48. By D on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Your doing a fine job Urbs..don’t let a knuckelhead ruin your weekend.

    peace

  49. By TucsonTim on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Darren –

    Though not always clear, my anger is at the Bidwill’s and Whiz; not you. I don’t like being cheated and lied to.

    Whiz is learning a very difficult lesson: you never hire a friend in business unless you’re willing to give up on that friendship and make it all about business. My guess it is even harder because Russ might even be a confidant; however, no matter how much he wishes that someone will offer Russ a job and make his problem disappear, Grimm has to go. Chad too. I’ve seen it in business and it’s as clear as the nose on your face. Grimm is a liability.

    Butler didn’t take a DC job in Miami because of the owner and lack of stability. Unless LeBeau steps down this year, not getting Butler here will speak volumes about the stability of Whiz and the Bidwills. Those tea leaves are pretty easy to read.

    If Whiz thinks he’s doing a good job calling plays and running the offense, then perhaps he has too many yes men (read, Grimm) around him and he’s done. Maybe one more season. The worst thing that any CEO can do is surround themselves with yes men. Wasn’t Haley a little difficult and confrontational? Leaders need people who are smart, dedicated and not afraid to tell you when you’re wrong, discretely of course. That’s life, not just a game called football.

  50. By tyman on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Kevin Greene now that is a good name to talk about. Coming out of greenbay with the psycho package would be a great plus. All in all we need a defensive mind that can come in with a complicated system that works. We need the blitz to come from everywhere. About the draft I think if you look at the pats last 5 draft classes you see DB’s being taken as thier firsts 3 picks every year at the end of the first mid second. Its like stealing, everyone wastes early picks on Rb’s, DL, OL, LB. I think we should look at thier model.

  51. By Brad Oneill on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Todd- I doubt there will be a fan revolt over Grimm staying. He is well liked by the faithful. I think he may have hitched his wagon to the wrong horse with levi brown but I can forgive a guy for sticking by a player he sees flashes of greatness in that just seems so close yet gives up the big play way too often.

    and its not grimms fault they arent running the ball. that is purely on the play caller.

  52. By Brad Oneill on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Vic Fangio’s head coach just went to the niners. i wonder if that makes him available for the dc slot? he is a 3 4 guy with a good track record.

  53. By NJAzCardsFan on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Thanks Darren… That is what I was wondering.

  54. By CardsFan on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Darren,

    Regarding the offense (and my apologies if you’ve covered this before), is there a sense of whether Whiz is going to proceed further in turning over more playcalling duties to Miller (or even make him OC full-time as he did Haley), or do you think that will just remain a part-time work-in-progress? (I know you said “intact”, but I took that to mean no personnel changes.)

  55. By drumm-1 on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    hey Darren, i like your response to todd, he’s one of the guys that will never be happy with any move the team makes, keep up the good work… thank god no more of this Andrew Luck crap..I still think Neil Lomax was the best qb we ever had…

  56. By Rob on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    I hope Billy stay gone

  57. By Lovethemcards on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    D Urb,

    Sorry for all the big idiots ridiculing and critizing you personally. I personally greatly admire and appreciate the work you do keeping us informed on the Cards. I recognized this has got to be the rough times of the job because everyone is upset because of the season we just had, but just saying thank you for all the hard work.

    And anyone reading this, can we be a bit more mature please? Attacking a man personally that works hard at his job FOR YOUR BENEFIT is flat ridiculous. There are many fans out there that would die to have an inside scope on things that D Urb provides. So shut up and keep the angry ranting to yourselves.

    You the man D Urb. Keep up the tough work!!!

  58. By Javi on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    is coach singletary a possibility

  59. By Eazy E on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    I really don’t like that we don’t even take a peek at the big name free agents. Their big names usually because their great players. You rarely find a Paris Lenon, that had a good year and didn’t cost a boatload of money. You have to spend money if you want to win PERIOD! You can’t get around it or beat around it.

  60. By Michael on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    How about Greg Manuskey

  61. By AndyStandsUp on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Will DC be filled on the weekend or more likely M-F?
    And what’s the chances of Whiz hiring an OC and Ray Lewis coming to AZ?
    I hear he’s willing to give it a shot.

  62. By Justin Wheeler on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    Darren,
    Stay strong through people’s personal attacks. After a rough season some people get frustrated and say to you what should be said to the coaching staff. I host a weekly football talk show in Milwaukee and get plenty of angry Email from fans myself.

    Two questions for you.

    1. Beanie Wells has looked physically outmatched when handed the football this season. What is the coaching staff’s opinion of him at this point, and how has he acted with the press during these last couple months. aka Is his stock falling as fast as it appears to be?

    2. Has there been any mention of defensive players either Whiz or Graves are particularily excited about in this April’s draft? Von Miller (Texas A&M) seems like a guy that would fit into Arizona’s defense immediately as a situational pass rusher.

  63. By Chuck 1 on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply

    I have disputed the claims of other posters over the last several weeks when they said (I’m paraphrasing) “this team has plenty of talent”.

    Now, I read above the following:

    By Darren Urban on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply
    Ellis –
    RE: Job/WR
    ……… “As for an “elite” wide receiver, you’re not turning down players, but at the same time, it’s not going to be a priority given the many other holes”.
    —————————
    By Ellis on Jan 7, 2011 | Reply
    …………………..”Also, i know we have holes all through the team that needs to be filled”.
    —————————-
    SO, WHICH IS IT??? DOES THIS TEAM HAVE LOADS OF TALENT OR ARE THERE “MANY OTHER HOLES”?????????????

  64. By tyman on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Hey Darren, you put it good here “If the Cardinals win, everyone will jump back on the bandwagon. If they lose, this coaching staff will be fired.” As a Cards fan every time we have a bad season I hear the same thing, fire the coaches. Any good orginization will give people more than one shot at somthing before they fire them. I think Bill davis did a darn good job as defensive coordinator to close out the season. New faces and big change all around the team is the reason for the downfall this season. Everyone needs to give the staff next season to start to make a turn around. At least the cards have a steady front office. people need to relaxe chill out. Whiz knows what hes doing, He took us to the super bowl how many years ago? what does everyone expect.

  65. By greg on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Hi Darren,
    This is unrelated to this topic but in the Commissioner’s letter to the fans he stated “We are also addressing the potential wear-and-tear on players in the way they train in-season and off-season.” Do you know what he is specifically looking at. I cannot remember hearing anything about this issue in the past.

    We enjoy your work, Thanks!

  66. By Card's Refugee on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Seriously people, I know it has been a bad year, but If anyone on here thinks that D. Urban does anything less than put as much info out as possible—–You are crazy! He dessiminates information- do you really expect him to bash on the team or the coaches. We all want them to be good and we all have an idea of what needs to be done (as all true arm chair GM’s should), but he is right leave your personal attacks about his professionalism alone. I for one am happy that we have Urban to ask questions of.

    Thanks Darrren!

    I bet you wish you would revoke your screen before posting respopnses policy!

  67. By TXcardsfan on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Darren-

    I’m going to go off topic so forgive me but I won’t take a shot at you or Grimm as it appears that is the in thing.

    If there is no CBA by the draft will there still be a draft? If so and we have no season next year will the draft rights carry over to the next season? Forgive the silly question not a “Draft guru” like most on here.

    All,

    Its clear Coach Whiz is blaming the struggles on O on lack of QB play and lost veteran leadership not the Coaching staff. It’s clear to me that if the team doesn’t win the very weak NFC west next year or at least have a winning record (and fill the stands) there will be a new Head Coach. So that is to say if you are unhappy with the Head Coach’s choice to stick with his staff let him know that not Darren for reporting it. Don’t get me wrong I’m all for winning and think there needs to be change on the Offensive staff but it’s clear that won’t happen this year. So let’s move on and not attack people and if things don’t turn around this time next year we can debate who the new Head Coach will be.

  68. By Chris B on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Jim Mora as DC?

    Darren,
    Props to you for putting up with the couch GM’s who apparrently would never make a mistake if they were doing Whiz’s or Graves’ job. Perhaps the Taco Bell job they have now is just a fill-in until a NFL team calls them for their vacant GM job.

  69. By CardiacCards on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Darren, you can write about how there is finally some good coaches in the NFC West, which is going to develop fast. That should put some pressure on the Cards FO to do the same.

  70. By Red32 on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    It’s amazing to me how many supposed “fans” are calling for Coach Whiz’s head. This man has been the most successful Cardinals head coach in my lifetime..the team has one bad season, and, suddenly, a vocal minority thinks he’s incompetent. I have to imagine these people either jumped on the bandwagon during the Super Bowl run or are completely ignorant of the game. Give Whiz and the coaching staff another season before wanting them run out of town. My bet is the Cards win the division again next year and, when they do, I ardently hope these same naysayers will admit that they were wrong.

  71. By Matt on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    if there is a lockout, obviously this years draft order is set….what about the next year?

  72. By Hank on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    How about Mike Singletary for DC

  73. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Todd —

    RE: Answers

    Appreciate the response. Know this: Everyone inside is very aware how the fans are angry. At the same time, this isn’t a democracy. Whisenhunt isn’t going to make decisions based on a fan poll, for the same reason you wouldn’t make decisions in your job based on a public vote. He spent however many years climbing the coaching ladder to get to this point based on his philosophies and decision-making, and he’s not going to doubt himself now.

    I understand people want change. I understand it is just because people want a winner. You think I don’t want a winner?

    As for Grimm specifically, the problem is going to be that, prior to this season, Whisenhunt was satisfied with the line play. That group that played together the Super Bowl year and most of last season they were happy with. You and others disagree, and I get that, but when you say “press the coach” the questions have been asked — many times — and those are the answers we get.

    You ask for “help.” Sorry everyone, I can’t help. I can ask some questions and I do my best to relay the thought process of what is going on. But I can’t change anything no matter what people on the outside want done.

  74. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Cards62 —

    RE: Offense

    1) Yes, offense was the weaker unit. I put most of that on the quarterback play.
    2) I don’t think who the OC is means anything in terms of being able to sign any particular free-agent QB (Name me an instance when it did). You offer the right contract/opportunity to play, the players don’t give a flying fig who is calling the plays.
    3) Am I surprised they didn’t make any moves on the offensive staff? A little.

  75. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Cactus —

    RE: Carlin

    Standup. Might have cleaned it up a bit for family consumption.

  76. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    CardsFan —

    RE: Play calling

    “Intact” in my comment did mean personnel. I think there is a good chance Miller’s role as playcaller will increase, yes. He’s talked about it too much now to think otherwise.

  77. By georgiebird on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Darren,
    Hiring of Harbaugh by the 49ers is one of the worst things that could have happened to the Cardinals. This is a wake up call to the Bidwills, we’re at a fork in the road:
    1) get into the mix for top players & coaches (yes, sometimes overpaying), OR
    2) stand-by and watch the division get better and even if a little progress is made in the next few years , it will not result in a playoff spot.

    The signing of McNabb is going to pose a difficult decision:
    1) is he the 2nd coming of Emmitt, Edge and Porter- OR
    2) or does McN have enough left to win a still weak NFC West

    This opens up the Cardinals getting the best defensive player in the draft (regardless of position) because the defense is horrible top to bottom.

  78. By KG on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Darren,

    You should post what the journalism definition is between a reporter and a columnist. It seems as though some do not know the difference and maybe that would help them manage their demands of you.

    With that being said, over the course of Whisenhunt’s tenure, I have heard him be both stubborn and also introspective. He has an idea of what he wants accomplished and how he plans to accomplish it and will stay the course, results be damned. He also has the ability (whether too late or not) to take a step back and admit that maybe emotions have gotten the best of him. With all this being said, I am curious to know that if at any time during the course of this season, has he ever indicated that maybe being involved as the play-caller has interfered with his ability to effectively manage the game as a head coach? I like Whiz and believe he is the right coach for this franchise. Aside from the Jedi Master in New England, I wouldn’t want another coach for this team, but I do think that his emotional attachment to play-calling gets in the way of his head coaching abilities. I am wondering if this is something you have seen him struggle with personally.

  79. By John on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    I can’t even believe what is going on here. Is this coach in some bubble? Does he even care about input from very observant fans and where is Graves? A DC change only? This is exactly why I said next year looks to be more of the same. I agree with what people said here. Make a headline story of why offensive coaching changes aren’t being addressed.

  80. By Adam on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Whisenhunt needs to bring in Tom Cable. He’s a tough guy that gets his players to play for him. This will bring a toughness to this team. Tom Cable doesn’t allow things to slide like Billy Davis and Whisenhunt do. And Tom Cable is a proven DC. John Fox is gonna be a head coach somewhere so he’s out. All though he would be an awesome hire. We all know Whisenhunt is going to try his hardest to bring someone in from Pittsburgh. He can’t let go of Pittsburgh guys. That doesn’t bother me but the main key is getting a quality DC on the team. It doesn’t matter how many points the offense scores if the defense allows more than they score. This offense has enough talent on it to have a good season with Skelton as starter. But what will make the Cards a contender again is someone like Kevin Kolb. No Andrew Luck now. Trade for Kevin Kolb and allow Skelton to be a back up. Also,if this team can get a Tight End that can stretch the field “Watch Out”!! Thats all the offense needs. The defense needs a couple changes but a REAL Mike linebacker will change everything. A smart linebacker!!! Not one that doesn’t know all of the adjustments on Defense like Gerald Hayes. The Mike Linebacker must be the smartest or one of the smartest guys on defense because he aligns right in front of the QB. Look at the defenses that have a beast at Mike Linebacker that is smart, it makes the whole defense good. Key word is “smart”. Anyone remember Antonio Pierce from the Giants?? Do your research on what the players and coaches said about him and how his intelligence affected the play of everyone on the “D”. Someone tha can line everyone on the defense up.. thats the kind of Mike linebacker the Cards need. I’m gonna stop being hard on the Cards. Whisenhunt made an amazing move by firing Billy Davis, thats an awesome start. Now we’ll see if Whisenhunt really wants to get back to the playoffs and the superbowl by who he hires as DC. That will set the tone for next season.
    Oh yeah. Russ Grimm needs to be held accountable for the O-Line not playing up to its ability too. We all seem to let him slide for some reason.

  81. By BLOOD RED on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    My biggest problem that seems to be with the Cards offense through all the years and all the coaches has been throwing behind the chains on third down.That drives me freekin crazy!At least if you complete the pass we should have the first.I don’t know what it is but if we could have these guys run routes a couple yards pass the chains would be a dream come true for me!I understand the blitzes etc. on third but come on man!Please whoever is calling the plays timing routes or whatever needs to happen to get these first downs right when they catch the ball ,they don’t have to make a move they already have it.Look at how many plays over the years(i bet a pretty high percent)on third down we complete the pass just short!Makes me want to break my TV!So whoever is calling the plays the fans will love to see this change!!!THANK YOU!!ROCK N ROLL REDBIRDS!!!!

  82. By Michael on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Hey Darren, Do you know if the Cards have any interest in Greg Manusky? if so do you think it would be a good fit? Thank you!

  83. By MikeG on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Hey Darren–Getting ready to watch the Saints game. Russ Grimm is a very good coach–well respected throughout the league. He is solid and for people to question his skills is a joke. A successful offensive line has to be 5 guys working as one and communicating as one. We have new guys on the line and it is going to take some time to develop chemistry. Most good lines have played together as a unit for at least 3 years. Fans need to be patient. From 2007 through 2009 we had a very good line. It didn’t get that way overnight. Do you see Lyle Sendlein sticking with us over the long term?????

  84. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    AndyStands —

    RE: DC timetable

    I would think it will go longer than the weekend. If Whiz is looking at anyone coaching with a playoff team, he needs to wait.

  85. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Justin —

    RE: Beanie/Defensive draftees

    1) I don’t know if I would say Beanie’s stock is falling. I do think he lost some of the ground he made by the end of the 2009 season. He still has something to prove to the staff, I believe.

    2) At this point, Graves and Whiz have done very little with the potential draftees. That’s a scouts thing. The combine will kick off their serious involvement in the process.

  86. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Greg —

    RE: Commish letter/Offseason

    Part of the negotiations of the new CBA and the extended regular season has been the idea the players don’t have to do as much in the offseason. So the current setup — which has included 14 “voluntary” OTA days, a minicamp and several weeks of “voluntary” weightlifting, which I think everyone understands isn’t really voluntary — will probably be reduced under the new CBA.

  87. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    TXcards —

    RE: CBA/draft

    There will be a draft regardless of the CBA situation. However, until there is a new CBA, none of those draft picks can be signed. And until there is a new CBA, teams can’t sign any undrafted rookies (guys like Stephen Williams and Max Komar last year). It will make for an interesting offseason.

    I don’t know what happens to the 2012 draft if there is no season, but in all honesty, I have zero fear of the entire 2011 season getting wiped out. I can’t see more than 2 or 3 games getting missed (and really, I don’t even think that will happen). There will be a season and then the draft order in 2012 will be normal.

  88. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Chris B —

    RE: Mora/DC

    Somehow, I don’t see that. But that’s just a gut thing.

  89. By brad oneill on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    i take it my long rambling letter about goodell’s letter got sent to the nut file.

    that sucks i put a lot of time into that thing.

  90. By SteveDCO on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Eazy E – How many big name FAs has New England or Pittsburg signed in the last 5 years?

    Big names are brought in when a team is complete and you need one positon to get over the hump.

    Gonzalez in Atl
    Moss in NE

    You know which team has made the most FAs signings, trades and aquisitions? The Denver Broncos..it’s a stat on their website. Who else is know for bringing in lots of FAs…Dallas, Washington…how did it work for those teams.

    IT’S NOT FANTASY FOOTBALL!

  91. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Cardiac —

    RE: NFC West coaches

    I may make that point. But while I think Harbaugh is a good hire, until he gets a quarterback — he had a better quarterback this year than what he’s looking at now — I think his success would be limited.

    Actually, that sounds familiar.

    It’s a quarterback-driven league.

  92. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Matt —

    RE: draft order

    Just addressed that above.

  93. By Chuck 1 on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Re: Whiz cutting Russ loose;
    It’ll be a cold day in Tempe (OK, it occasionally gets cold there; like maybe now?) when Whiz fires his close Bud, Russ.
    I could see Whiz pushing Russ “upstairs” to a position of Asst. Head Coach and bringing in a Offensive Line Coach.

  94. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    KG —

    RE: Whiz and play calling

    He was asked that specifically and he said he does not think it interferes with his duties. Could he be wrong? Of course. But I couldn’t say for sure. Unless you are on the sideline in games and know the give-and-take, I don’t know how you could be sure. As Mike Miller does more playcalling, we can see if anything shifts. Tangible problems — delay of game penalties, stuff like that — don’t seem to be unusually high. There were some issues this year, but some of that has to do with quarterback play as much as the playcaller.

  95. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Michael —

    RE: DC/Manusky

    I have not heard that name, but I haven’t heard any names, so he could be a possibility.

  96. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    MikeG —

    RE: Sendlein

    I don’t know if Lyle stays. I think he will hit free agency. I think the Cards will re-sign him for reasonable amount, but if some team money-whips him, I could see them letting him go.

  97. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Brad —

    RE: Goodell response

    Comon Brad. You know me better than that.

    I just hadn’t gotten to it yet. It’s the weekend. Give me a little leeway.

  98. By MikeG on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Hey Darren–It is something how loud that stadium is in Seattle. Seems like it is the loudest in the league–that is something because it is not a dome. Old school stadium. Which stadium’s come to mind as the loudest that you have been to in covering a game???

  99. By RelayTV on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Darren & Everyone else,

    The reason fans, myself included, keep harping on this “hire an Offensive Coordinator” thing is simple:

    2 Years ago we had a great one (haley) and we were one play away from winning the superbowl.

    Haley leaves and goes on to take the Chiefs to the playoffs in 2 seasons. And despite being a fantastic O.C., Haley WISELY hires an O.C. to run the offense.

    Meanwhile last year Whiz says he can call the plays AND be the head coach, and even with Warner still at the top of his game, and Boldin still here, and Hightower still here, and Breaston still here, our offensive is not as good as it was in 2008.

    Check the stats, it just wasn’t.

    This year, Whiz loses Boldin and Warner and the Offensive is pathetic. Probably not Whiz’ fault, but it is HIS problem.

    Black and White–
    Out team’s best season ever, in history, included a great O.C.
    There are several currently available.
    There is no reason other than pride, why Whiz does not hire one.

    And for the haters:
    Darren works for THE CARDINALS, not the AZ Republic, Fox Sports, or CNN.
    It is NOT his job to press or badger anyone for “answers” or register our displeasure.

    Stop expecting him to behave “Like Kent Somers” or anyone else in the news media. HE’S NOT IN THE NEWS MEDIA!

    And he does his ACTUAL job, very well.

  100. By georgiebird on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Darren,
    Re: comments with Todd
    Early in the season, I questioned how you could be an advocate for us fans. Back then, the timing was bad because the Cardinals’ losses had not occurred yet. Darren, you have a difficult job- you can’t stray too far from the middle. In one of your most recent answers, you confirmed the fact that (contrary to fan expectations) your job isn’t “fan advocate”-
    Why is everyone going after Grimm and the offensive line? The OL is adequate and would be more than passable with an above average QB. Meanwhile, the defense units are
    bad from top to bottom-only Dockett and Rhodes are average, the rest of the defense is below average.
    For the fans to say , we have so much talent- Where is all this talent?

  101. By TXcardsfan on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Brad-

    RE: Goodell response

    I agree with the new stadiums coming from the league and the ownership groups. Although I think the player salaries tax will go over like a fart in church. But if the ownership group has control of the stadium i think it will over all strengthen the league and takes the pressure off of the city that supports that ownership group with ticket sales already so why should they pay for the stadium also.

  102. By darrel on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    This topic is so watered down already but darren is it fair to say they cards will chase. two qbs@? after going through 5 this season imo hall/da should be cut. Skelton only one worthy of a roster spot

  103. By Keith Ringeisen on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    I am a first time poster but longtime Cards fan. I am in agreement with you about that the offense is our weakest link mostly because of the QB situation. I am not sold on Skelton although I think he could be atleast a servicable backup in the future. Here are some QB questions and other observationsobservations I have been thinking about since…..week one of this season.
    1) is Kolb injury prown or is it just me and how would he fit in to our offensive scheme. Currenlty he is in the west coast offense which is much different then ours.
    2) what the skinny on Ryan Mallet he looked great in the sugar bowl against the high powered buckeye’s. I here there are charactor issues? He seems a perfect fit as long as we get a vet like bulger to tie use over for a year or two… your thoughts?

    3) Mcnab a player i have always respected but is not a good fit for us….we need a drop back passer not an old athletic qb who no longer has the cardio to run the two minute offense.

    Moving on to the OL. Levi=bust, fanica=retirement home lyle=servicable player but no mangold, duece=next contestant on the biggest loser, j.b=lunch pail guy but is he really a starter, Keith=long term project remind me of big l. davis better suited to play guard….. all this being said, you get what you pay for and our OL stinks cause we spend all the money on a bust and bring in projects and retires to do the heavey lifting. Russ isn’t the problem. It’s the level of talent he is given to work with……I am ranting sorry the question is do you think the cards will spend money in FA this year especially on some O-linemen?
    lastly thoughts and prayers to the victims of the senseless crime of violence today in tucson. I hope all involved a quick and full recovery.

  104. By Lone-Eagle on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Hey Darren,

    I really don’t expect a response, I am just giving my opinion. Granted the Seahawks don’t have a great record, but they have emerged at the right time, not saying they are going the whole way but then again, we weren’t supposed to go all the way to the Superbowl either. I am assuming that they will only get better. As for the Rams, well last year they were 1-15 and this year one game away from the division. They have a second year QB that I believe will only get better as well as a team that is only going to improve. Then you have the 9ers that went out and got a good coach and from the sounds of it will spare no expense to get back to the top. Here is what I am curios about. What are the Cardinals going to do to keep up with the rest of the division. It’s obvious to me as well as the rest of Cardinal nation, that the Bidwells are going to have to compete with the rest of the division as well as the rest of the league. As every one already knows we are we are in desperate need of a veteran QB that is proven. After the last game, even though I thought the O-line stunk up the joint, I do believe that Skelton needs more seasoning from a proven veteran QB. Now I really won’t specify whom I think they should bring in, because only the organization knows what is best for their system. I do believe the O-line needs serious work. We have 2 very good RB’s obviously, but if the O-line can’t create holes, what good are they, and if the can’t stop the rush, it doesn’t really matter who they put under the center. Whiz was right, there are going to have to be significant changes on both sides of the ball as well as the coaching, that is just my opinion. I really look forward to the upcoming weeks and hope the front office makes the correct decisions. If not I fear Fitz will not be back in 2012, as well as a few other key players. Good luck FO, I wish you the best!!!

  105. By cardinalchris on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Darren,

    Can you help me understand why the Cards have not signed so many of our own players(Lutui, Sendlein,etc) to contracts? I’m assuming it’s a financial thing because of the looming lockout, but I don’t understand how that would effect the Bidwills pocketbook. Aren’t players paid when they play? Can’t we go ahead and get them under contract without a financial impact? other than signing bonuses-which I’m guessing could be delayed in the contract terms…

  106. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    MikeG —

    RE: Loud stadiums

    Qwest pretty loud.

    UoP for the playoffs — was down on the field for NFC title game — was deafening.

  107. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Georgie —

    RE: Talent evaluation

    I guess that’s the question, isn’t it? It also shows how opinions are all over the map.

    Some think Grimm does a terrible job. Some think he doesn’t have the right players. Some think both are OK, but the QB/playcalling stinks.

    We can play the same game on defense.

    And yet, every single person thinks they are right — and anyone who disagrees with them is wrong.

  108. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Darrel —

    RE: QBs

    I would not be surprised to see two new QBs by next season.

  109. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Keith —

    RE: OLine

    Well, they will have to spend some money on the offensive line, because Faneca/Sendlein/Lutui are FAs. So either they are re-signed o you have to sign replacements.

  110. By Darren Urban on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Cardinal —

    RE: Lack of extensions

    I think it’s less of the financial impact (you are going to have to pay someone to play) as much as two other issues:

    1) With the new CBA, you don’t know how the new salary cap will work — meaning you don’t know how you are going to want to structure the deal. Maybe it will be the same, but maybe not (and maybe players will need 5 years to be a FA instead of 4, meaning for example, Breaston is restricted).

    2) (and this one is more guesswork) Handing players a big signing bonus just a couple months before it is possible they won’t play for an entire season doesn’t exactly excite many owners. I am guessing the Bidwills would be of that mindset.

  111. By Eazy E on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    Steve DCO-
    Ok New England got Moss like you said and they do build usually through the draft but they sign big names when they need too. We haven’t even signed a Moss. Plus they have 3 super bowl rings to our 0. Pittsburgh is like New England too but they have 6 super bowl rings, so they can ”get” away with it if they have too, we can’t. The Bears got Peppers and he is arguably Defensive MVP of the league. Big names in the right situation are definitely worth the money.

  112. By Eazy E on Jan 8, 2011 | Reply

    I meant to say the cardinals not our.

  113. By brad oneill on Jan 9, 2011 | Reply

    txcardsfan- i just want to present you with a medal for reading the longest post ever left on the blog.

    i agree with you that the nfl would hate to pay for its own stadiums, and it won’t happen anyway but hey without a list of demands they wouldnt know we really cared.

  114. By UC on Jan 9, 2011 | Reply

    cards62, “The Piglets”…now that was funny.

  115. By cardsalltheway on Jan 9, 2011 | Reply

    Congrats to the Seahawks! Now, if the Cards only had a coach that could bring the players together like Pete Carroll.

    I thought the defense was bad because of the offense(that doesn’t mean the firing of the previous deuce bag wasn’t a good idea). Ken W. was directly in charge of the offense b/c he had no OC, so what to do(“let go/relieve” Ken W?), something must be done?
    If nothing is done then expect more non-drafted rookies from AZ to become Cardinal QB’s. Why? Just because they have MOXY, Ha, Ha, Ha, way to go Ken W.!
    Really, how can a coach make such stupid decisions?
    I suggest Ken W. see a shrink on a daily basis for at least a while.
    The 49ers coach Mike Singletary(laughing stock of the NFL per David Letterman and based on Cardinal pundits — Wolf etc…) who put a beat down on the Cards with a newly replaced(there goes your “don’t fire a coach mid-season” philosophy Darren) offensive coordinator then a new head coach and still put another(worse) beat down on the Cardinals.
    Ken W. simply can’t coach! He ought to go back to coaching High School or whatever hole he came from. He coaches based on who sucks up to him the most or where they are from, that’s it.

  116. By cardsalltheway on Jan 9, 2011 | Reply

    I suggest the NFL and owners come to an agreement, like how President Obama is willing to negotiate and get things done. Now, if only the Cardinal owner(s), front office, and so-called coaching staff would do the same for goodness sake.

  117. By Phil on Jan 9, 2011 | Reply

    Thanks Darren, I appreciate all you do and I know MANY fans that appreciate you as well.

    What I appreciate the most is your honest assessment and sharing of what you hear.

  118. By TucsonTim on Jan 9, 2011 | Reply

    MikeG –

    I’m guessing that G stands for Grimm. Go to the NFL web site. Cards 2nd worst in number of sacks, tied with Carolina, and dead last in the NFL in rushing. What criteria are you using to state that Grimm is “a very good coach”? How should he be graded as a coach? His golf handicap?

    The play calling perplexes me, but clearly Whiz had no faith in the running game.

    I think it is a little unusual for fans to consistently (check any blog, any web site) to call out for an ass’t coach’s firing.

    Whiz gets a mulligan for taking the Cards to the SB with Haley, Warner, Delhome and a 9-7 home NFC championship game. There is no down side to firing Grimm (and Grimm’s son Chad). Keeping Grimm speaks volumes about Whiz’s leadership…players see it as clear as the nose on your face.

    PS Faneca, stays if Grimm stays, retires if he is fired…wait and see.

  119. By Jesse Robles on Jan 9, 2011 | Reply

    Lets go after Nnamdi Asomugha! That way we can draft a LB, we need this, we need someone to PUSH DRC!

  120. By allan on Jan 9, 2011 | Reply

    Darren,
    Here is my opinion, and would like to know what your thoughts are to see if you agree.
    I think the defense is not to blame for this season. The offense did not stay on the field long enough for the defense to regroup and for Bill Davis to react and make decisions. As soon as the Cardinals got behind by even a touchdown, the defense knew that the offense did not have enough fire power to get ahead.
    Wiz obviously can’t fire the offensive coordininator because it’s him. True he was an offensive coordinator with the Steelers but the game has changed to a QB/passing league and he is trying to run a 5 year old Steelers running game offense.
    I think we need a offensive coordinator desperately in my opinion. True the QB play was horrible, but it the Warner days he was somewhat of the offensive coordinator in that he would now when to call an audible, know where the pass rush was coming and attack the defense.
    That is what I miss in Todd Haley an attacking offensive style. By the way does Wiz know the TE is an eligible receiver.
    We get Wiz to quite calling the plays, which he has already done somewhat, and get a good QB that understands the game and has a quick release and it fixes a lot of other problems.

  121. By johnnybluenose on Jan 9, 2011 | Reply

    darren, a bit off-topic here..seattle won at home yesterday. last year we won at home against green bay. in 2009 we won at home against atlanta and against philly. in 2008 i believe seattle won at home against dallas. i know most people don’t think much of the nfc west but our play-off record when we play at home is pretty good. home field advantage didn’t help the colts last night and won’t do much for either kc or philly today but it seems to work just fine for our guys. i kind of like tom cable as our DC.

  122. By Darren Urban on Jan 9, 2011 | Reply

    Allan —

    RE: Problems

    I think the defense did not play as well as it should have/needed to this season, regardless of the offense.

    I think I understand people want change. But again, some people argue he doesn’t run enough, you seem to be arguing his offense isn’t aggressive enough throwing the ball.

  123. By Darren Urban on Jan 9, 2011 | Reply

    Johnnyblue —

    RE: Cable

    Pretty sure Cable background is as o-line coach, not defense.

  124. By Chuck 1 on Jan 9, 2011 | Reply

    TAKE NOTE:
    The Seahawks’ TIGHT END caught TWO TOUCHDOWN PASSES against the Saints.

    DARREN, how many TD passes did the Cards’ tight ends catch this year?

    And, how many passes IN TOTAL did they catch vs. the wide receivers?

    One reason that the Cards’ offense was so ineffective was because Whiz didn’t use the TEs as a weapon.

    And, don’t expect him to change in 2011.

  125. By Chuck 1 on Jan 9, 2011 | Reply

    Unless the Bidwills, Graves and Whiz make monumental changes this off season, expect the Cards to finish at the bottom of the NFC Worst in 2011.
    The reasons, as a few have noted:
    #1: The 9ers will be much better with Harbaugh as coach.
    #2: The Seahawks will be at least as good.
    #3: As will the Rams
    All this, assuming injuries don’t affect the performance of our division opponents.

  126. By TXcardsfan on Jan 9, 2011 | Reply

    Chuck1-

    RE: TE

    You have to have a TE before you can use them as a weapon. TE has been lacking on this team for years. Correct me if I’m wrong but i think the Cards ended the year using Jim Dray and a combo of a guard and long snapper as the backup and 2nd TE. You show me where the weapon is? I agree all the top QB’s in this league have and use a TE that is a weapon. But we need the top QB and the TE before it can become a weapon.

  127. By SteveDCO on Jan 9, 2011 | Reply

    Easy – You proved my point.

    How many people wanted Albert Hanyensworth signed in AZ? I remeber people blasting the Bidwills for not signing him. How did that work out? Want him now?

    How many people wanted/ want McNabb? He was benched for Grossman in Wash and told he will come back as a bench player, if at all, next year. I still see people blasting Whiz/ Graves/ Bidwills for not trading for him.

    The best teams don’t play fantasy football. What teams are known for making moves? Washington, Dallas and who has made the most trades, FA acquisitions on the last 3 years? Denver Broncos. Who has the worst talent in the NFL, Broncos.

    As far as using the TE. How many drops did Spach and Dray have in the last few weeks of the season? The AZ TEs has just under 30 catches for the season. The Pitt TE Miller has a little over 40 passes. The NE TE Gronkowski had just over 40 catches.

    If we didn’t have as many drops and had good QB play our TEs would have been on pace. We aren’t a TE driven team. Watch the Steelers if you want to understand what this team is being built to do.

    I just want all the haters to remember their comments when Whiz hires a DC, promotes Miller to OC and finds a good QB. When that happens this team will win the NFCW.

  128. By TXcardsfan on Jan 9, 2011 | Reply

    Chuck1-

    Reception’s WR = 208 TE = 15

    Touchdown’s WR = 10 TE = 0

    This is strait off the Cardinals statistics page.

    I’m pretty sure the plays were drawn up to go to the open player. You got to have a good healthy TE that gets open before you can throw to them .

  129. By AZBIGRED24 on Jan 9, 2011 | Reply

    Cards need to sign Nnamdi Asomugha; he is a true shut down corner. He could take DRC under his wing and help our pass rush as well.

  130. By SteveDCO on Jan 9, 2011 | Reply

    Darren – The TE stat don’t look right.

    What I show is
    Ben Patrick – 15
    Stephen Spock – 6
    Jim Dray – 3
    For a total of 25 catches by TEs in 2010.

  131. By Eazy E on Jan 10, 2011 | Reply

    Steve DCO-
    We already had robinson, watson, and branch at NT so I understood why we didn’t get haynesworth, even though I wouldn’t have minded because haynesworth is a huge talent. Shanahan already admitted that he screwed up the donovan situation and he lied plenty times in that saga. Grossman did nothing but turn the ball over as he always does. The broncos made the most moves by giving away all their talented players, traded Marshall, Cutler, Hillis, Scheffler, and Alphonso Smith. They screwed up their whole team.

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