Play-calling now Miller time (sometimes)

Posted by Darren Urban on December 20, 2010 – 8:52 pm

As both Mike Jurecki and Kent Somers reported today (man, where was I?), passing game coordinator Mike Miller has been calling some of the plays, with coach Ken Whisenhunt still calling some. I had heard a few weeks ago Miller had been involved in calling some stuff; I don’t know how it splits up or whether Miller’s involvement has grown.

Whisenhunt didn’t make a big deal about it because, obviously, playcalling has been a source of, let’s call it consternation, for many fans. Miller (pictured below with ESPN’s Suzy Kolber) is being brought into the job like Whiz did with Todd Haley (after Bill Cowher did it with Whisenhunt in Pittsburgh). It was always the plan to let Miller get to this point; Whisenhunt said he eventually wanted to do so when Miller was promoted after Haley left following the Super Bowl appearance.

I remember too that Haley got some chances to call some plays later in 2007, but that it stayed under the radar until Whisenhunt talked about it in the offseason prior to 2008 (It was important for Haley for people to know he was calling plays. Sometimes, that news didn’t travel quite as quickly as he would have liked).

The first thing I think of is this: No matter who is calling plays, you still need a good quarterback, something for which the Cards are searching. The other is the fact that Whisenhunt is going to be the driving offensive mind as coach. No matter who is coordinating the offense and/or calling plays, it’s still going to be Whiz’s philosophy. It’s his team.

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82 Responses to “Play-calling now Miller time (sometimes)”

  1. By JoeVero on Dec 20, 2010 | Reply

    Are Mike Miller and Chris Miller related to Heath Miller?
    That Whiz is always bringing in steelers, now he’s bringing in Steeler’s family!

  2. By Darren Urban on Dec 20, 2010 | Reply

    JoeVero —

    RE: Millers

    None are related.

  3. By David Groff on Dec 20, 2010 | Reply

    Darren, i believe the play calling for our team doesnt reflect on who we are or who we should be, i think we need to get the run game more involved with the two very talented back that we have, and on our third down situations i believe more aggressive calls should be made, especially with the threats we have at the WR spot. Although I am not really one to say, because i just watch the games from afar.

    Darren, any comments on this?

  4. By Darren Urban on Dec 20, 2010 | Reply

    David —

    RE: Offensive philosophy

    Better QB play would help all of the above.

  5. By AndyStandsUp on Dec 20, 2010 | Reply

    Any links to Whiz stating that eventually Miller would take over play calling? Was this maybe a suggestion from the FO after this “frustating” season? Why isn’t Grimm partaking as well?

  6. By Darren Urban on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    AndyStands —

    RE: Whiz/playcalling plan link

  7. By QB HELP on Dec 20, 2010 | Reply

    please please please please please please please please please pleaseplease please please please please please please please please pleaseplease please please please please please please please please pleaseplease please please please please please please please please pleaseplease please please please please please please please please please bring in mcnabb……i know a lot of people think he is done and that he is washed up and so on and so forth but for me for this team for the fans for fitz!! for tha love of love please bring him i promise you/we wont be sorry

  8. By darrel on Dec 20, 2010 | Reply

    Hey darren do know. if fitz was holding an event @ eddies house resturant just curious because I happend to see him there today

  9. By Darren Urban on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Darrel —

    RE: Fitz

    Don’t know about that.

  10. By David Groff on Dec 20, 2010 | Reply

    Darren –

    RE: Offensive philosophy

    Yes i can definately agree with that, but I think it would be a good choice to keep Skelton because he shows potential for next year with the experience he is gaining this season/

    Darren, agreed?

  11. By Darren Urban on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    David —

    RE: Skelton

    John will be with the team in 2011.

  12. By UC on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    LOL, perfect timing. In the midst of fan uproar about the playcalling, suddenly The Repulsive floats a story about King Whiz not calling all the plays. Just like during the midst of the fan uproar about King Whiz senselessly continuing to play DA, The Repulsive floats a story about how King Whiz really wanted to sign Marc Bulger during the offseason, but the Bidwill’s wouldn’t let him.

    What do both of these stories have in common? Hmm, let me think about it for a moment. Wha…hey…whazzat?!?!?! BUT OF COURSE!!! Both of these stories deign to provide an excuse that will allow King Whiz to weasel out of taking responsibility for the stupid way he’s running the team, AND blames other people for the problems that have actually been caused by King Whiz!!! Why, that sneaky, sneaky King Whiz, he almost had all us dumb-dumbs fooled. He sho’ ’nuff be one smarty kinda’ guy, ’cause we unedumacated dolts should have never been able to see through such highly sophisticated misdirection.

    Q’s claim that King Whiz lied to him, and Q saying that King Whiz wasn’t “man enough”, continue to resonate louder and louder the more King Whiz tries to hide his incompetence. Yet again King Whiz has tried to evade being held accountable for his stupid decisions, and yet again he has done so by trying to mislead the public.

    Congratulations Michael Bidwill, your dad’s team has a head coach who has made lying to your fanbase, and trying to evade responsibility, both organizational policy. He even has stooped low enough to try and accomplish these ends by implicating other people. Since you continue to employ such an individual, we fans are left to assume that you approve of King Whiz behaving in this manner. That being the case, then my discretionary dollars can be spent on something other than the Arizona Cardinals.

  13. By Darren Urban on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    UC —

    RE: Playcalling

    You are an angry, angry man.

    Another take, from’s Mike Sando (because I know people like to point out to me when he is critical of things): “Not sure if offensive play-calling ranks among top 10 problems for Arizona — or if it is a problem at all.”

  14. By Pheenic Cromartie on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Some new QB’s definitely wouldn’t hurt. It doesn’t matter how good the Coaching Staff is, in fact, it doesn’t matter how good the rest of the team is, without a decent QB, the team’s going nowhere.

    Off-season priority #1: Getting a QB.

    By the way Darren, what do you think about keeping Bill Davis as the RZ Defense Coach? The Cardinals Defense is ranked #2 in the Redzone, so it’s something to think about.

  15. By Darren Urban on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Pheenic —

    RE: Bill Davis

    Doesn’t work that way. If Davis stays, it’ll be as DC.

  16. By Doug on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Coach Miller is a great coach a great person and has a vast knowledge of the game. The Cardinals are fortunate to have him.

  17. By Donnie on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    i`m glad that ken has been implementing a plan for someone to take over the OC dutys,i`m a minority here and still have faith in a coach that took us to greatness after a 100+ yrs of failure ,”oh my God” we have had a bad year after losing a HOF QB..No kidding..”lets fire everyone and hire every cast off in the league”
    as the bandwagon emptys Whiz keeps the course no matter how bad the flack is.
    Whiz will get this thing turned around next year despite the FO & fans fighting him every step of the way

  18. By Rugbymuffin on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply


    Any chance that the players understand that there is still a solid base of Cardinals fans that despise the Cowboys.

    An already horrific season will be a quadruple-nightmare with a loss to the Cowboys at home, for many.

    A win would be huge for a lot of fans, and a season saver for some like me.

    One can only hope that with two weeks left, and games against the Cowboys, and Niners. That our squad realizes it has the oppourtunity to win some games for the fans against some hated rivals…………I stress hope.

  19. By Darren Urban on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Rugby —

    RE: Cowboys/winning

    As I wrote last week, the players want to win. There is nothing in it for them to lose. They get ripped on/booed by fans, criticized in media, and they jeopardize their own future.

  20. By Ottis Anderson Fan on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    I’d love to see the Cards with a QB who has the added dimension of being a serious run threat. That would definitely open up the playbook and give opposing defenses fits like Vick does in Philly.

    Vick’s play this season is definitely helping Cam Newton’s draft stock. He’ll be a bit of a project, but you know he’s got all the physical tools to eventually play like Vick is now. The question is how much time will Whiz be given to bring a QB along.? The upside with Newton as opposed to Luck is that you figure both are going to struggle learning the passing game, but at least you know Newton is going to make some big plays with his legs to keep things interesting, much like Vick did when starting in Atlanta.

    Everyone realizes the tremendous upside of a guy like Newton, and I believe ownership and fans would give Whiz the extra time to develop a Newton. But if Whiz decides to go with another cast-off reject FA QB next year as his starter, Whiz’s rope is going to be pretty short if things quickly go south in 2011 like they did this year. You can’t be a poor evaluator of QB talent and expect to hold a head coaching job in this league.

    That said, I think Whiz has been humbled enough this year with some of his personnel decisions that cost this team their season, and he will be adjusting his personal criteria that he uses to evaluate QB talent and drive.

  21. By darrel on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Yo otis totally agree with you .. if u don’t get luck. You have to to grab. Newton afrer championship game and combine his draft stock will rise just watch. Hell have a vuzz around him when its draft time

  22. By Big Red on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Hey Darren, It seems like you favor Max Hall more than John Skelton, do you still believe in Tiny Hall. I see a complete change on the team when Skelton is in there. Just wondering. I see Big John as our future.

  23. By Darren Urban on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Big Red —

    RE: Hall/Skelton

    Show me some links that supports your theory about what I “favor.”

  24. By MIKEFLORIO on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Urb any news on where, coach grimm might end up this year???
    Who is on our free angency list, and how is this years player agreement going to affect our draft?
    I hope we get someone as good as the year denny green snaged. Boldin, Docket, Dansby.

  25. By Darren Urban on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    MikeFlorio —

    RE: Grimm/FA

    Don’t know on Grimm. I know his name has been floated for Carolina, but the people I talk to there are leery that’s going to happen. As for FA, we have to have a new CBA first. No free agency until there is a new collective bargaining agreement. That may not be until later in the summer.

  26. By DAfan on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    DA is a great QB. He was brought to this team and named the starter over Leinart, a former #10 overall pick! We not only benched Leinart, but we cut him after only 6 starts under Whisenhunt! If that isn’t proof of how great DA is, then I don’t know what is. Obviously, we have the talent at QB. The problems must be somewhere else.

  27. By darrel on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Hey your like the only the derek anderson fan congrats on that lol u must be related …but I’m curious to know what u think makes him a great qb because a lot people feel he shouldn’t even be on a nfl team I’m just woundering what makes him nfl worthy when he got out played by lienart hall and skelton. And hell bartel is probably better we just don’t know it yet . He bascially got handed starting job really didn’t even earn it lol just curiouse what your point is

  28. By Rugbymuffin on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply


    Thanks for answering.

    But with all due respect, that is not what I asked.

    Does this team realize what a big deal any game against the Cowboys is to a lot of this fan base ?

    Just sayin’ Cause opportunity for redemption doesn’t come by everytime things are bad.

  29. By Darren Urban on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Rugby —

    RE: Fan base/Cowboys game

    I get it. And I got your question the first time.

    But frankly, most of the time the players aren’t thinking of the fans. They want support, yes, but on their list of why they want to succeed, fans aren’t ranking above the other options.

  30. By UC on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply


    I’m angry about the way King Whiz is running the Cardinals, and I don’t like the head coach further trying to lie about it. Perhaps his ineptitude and hypocrisy doesn’t bother you, but it bothers me, and it’s quite obvious that Q didn’t like it either. You are entitled to your opinion, Sando is entitled to his, and I’m entitled to mine. If your defensiveness about what I say is intended to support your employer, as I’ve said before, I get it and I don’t envy the position you’re in.

    However, if you’re offense is some kind of professional circling-the-wagon regarding the sportswriters at The Repulsive, please, give me a break. That newspaper, including the sports section, is a joke, and anybody with half a brain knows it. Those schlubs have already been willing to cart around KIng Whiz’s golf clubs, and now twice they’ve conveniently come up with stories to try and cover him, one of which was attributed to “anonymous sources”, all the while writing nothing more than milquetoast criticism of him. Why was I the one who had to discover that the Cards have passed the ball 90% of the time on 3rd down while Skelton has been starting, why didn’t I read that in The Repulsive? Those people are the ones who get paid to be journalists, not me. Don’t even try to tell me that the sportswriters at The Repulsive are doing their jobs.

  31. By Darren Urban on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    UC —

    RE: Whiz

    Apparently you’re in the wrong line of work then. I am surprised you haven’t applied to the Republic so you can upgrade their coverage.

    By the way, didn’t hear from you last year when “King Whiz” was winning the division. What Anquan didn’t like was not getting a new contract. He had every right to feel that way. But the rest of it was just background noise. Trust me, if they had extended Q and given him the money he wanted, he wouldn’t have had any problem playing for Whiz.

    Singletary knows his starting QB, but he won’t tell the fans. Should they revolt? You think Belichick is telling the New England fans what’s up?

  32. By Rugbymuffin on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply


    Thanks. Why your the best.

    Have a happy holidays.

  33. By Kurt on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Great news now Whiz can concentrate on keeping the team concentrating

  34. By Jesse Robles on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Who is Whiz blaming next, The Fans? Grow up, stop playing the Blame game and take responsibility for your redicuous actions.

  35. By cards62 on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    UC get off Darren’s back. Most of us fans have been angry since the preseason as we knew Coach Whiz and Graves messed up the season royally when Leinart was cut and our lines played poorly.
    Darren has done a fine job being objective and taking our comments and opinions of which most including mine have been mostly negative of the Cardinals Coaches, Front Office Personnel and Players
    The team is 4 – 10 and should be 2 – 12 with how poorly we have played this season so of course most fans are angry.

    I do try to be fair and want coach Whiz and Graves back next year, but 2011 is a critical year for them, and the Bidwills to show us fans that they can do the job, and that they will invest in our team to win.

    Darren I did not hear before that Coach WHiz wanted to sign Bulger, but the front office said no. Is this true or not? I think this is very important if Whiz did want to sign him but we did not.

    No offense to Miller, but I am really hoping San Diego does not make the playoffs and are stupid and fire Norv Turner, I really want him to be our Offensive Cordinator and work with our QBs. I think Norv is very underrated as a coach and has worked very well with Troy Aikman and Phillip RIvers on developing their games.
    Go Cards

  36. By UC on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Wow Darren, you’re ok with the cause of the Cards’ embarrassing season, but the criticism of your journalistic peers is what touches a nerve? That’s funny. Since you apparently want to make an issue of journalistic standards, then I’ll point out that while you did post about the Cards’ 3rd-down situations during the Panthers game, you neither followed the logic of those numbers to discover that King Whiz has been setting up Skelton to fail on 3rd down since he’s been starting, nor did you mention that King Whiz lied about the 3rd down situations after the game.

    Regarding my activity on this site, you didn’t hear from me AT ALL before this season, because I expected the ineptitude from Bill Bidwill, and I never expected him to display any degree of competence in his running of the team. So when the Cards had one disastrous season after another, I wasn’t surprised.

    However, when Michael began running things, and King Whiz was hired, I assumed that the still-evident stupidity within the organization was just residual cultural effects of the previous management. I assumed those issues would eventually be worked out. What’s become apparent this season, though, is that there’s a whole different set of problems that King Whiz brought along with him, and those problems show absolutely NO signs of being adequately resolved.

    Those problems resulted in a player of the stature of Q stating publicly that his head coach wasn’t “man enough” to talk to him, and on another occasion had lied to him. You can claim these incidents were nothing other than “just background noise” and about nothing other than money, but that claim doesn’t hold water with me. A player’s PUBLIC statements this bitter, insulting, and very, very personal, about his boss don’t just happen unless there’s a whole lot of baggage behind them, no matter how much you and the other local media ignore them and try to pretend they didn’t happen. Q and King Whiz butted heads because Q actually is a man of his word, while King Whiz just pretends to be.

    Lastly, only a fool would believe that it’s primarily the people who post on this site that are the ones who provide the revenue stream which enables this team to be a profitable business. You can sarcastically snipe at me all you want for saying what a large contingent of the fanbase is thinking, but your sarcastic sniping won’t change the reality of this team’s lousy coaching staff.

  37. By Darren Urban on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    UC —

    Yep, you’ve got be figured out. I’m OK with the “cause” of the bad season (of course, it’s your opinion of the cause). So he is “setting up Skelton to fail” because why, he expects an NFL quarterback to be able to complete a pass on third-and-4? Because he won’t run 67 percent of the time? Did you even bother to pay attention to the way the Panthers were playing defense?

    Never said there was not baggage with Q. That’s a big reason he was traded. But for you to sit and talk about how much the team lies, and then try to say you know exactly what’s going on behind closed doors here, is crazy. I don’t know everything. How could you?

    Clearly, you’d rather have Whisenhunt gone. Just blow it up and start over. Fine. You have a right to feel that way.

    And before you get on me for sarcasm, maybe you should check yourself and look at your original post, which was dripping with the stuff. Again, OK for you but not me, apparently.

  38. By darrel on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    darren I’m shocked you responded to this ignorant post ..hey UC, have facts if your going to talk like that and facts are something u can prove

  39. By Magee on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Apparently we could use most of the Steeler coaching staff. As a Cowboy hater of 40 years, I hope the Cardinals play the game of their life on Chriatmas Day and win.

  40. By Allen on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Darren, what are the chances of getting marc bulger in next year and who do you think the cards would pick in the draft, a qb? (if a qb, who?) or a defensive player? (again who?).

  41. By Darren Urban on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Allen —

    RE: QBs

    I think Bulger will be an option, but they will explore a lot of different scenarios, I believe. QB choices will impact everything else.

  42. By IRISHRED on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    UC= cardsalltheway
    The movie “Big Fan” has GOT to be your life story. How pathetic! For heaven’s sake, the sky is blue, the moon is full, the stockings are hung by the chimney with care….
    Darren, Merry Christmas to all; to all a good night!

  43. By darrel on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    This post is funny

  44. By Cardiaccard420 on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Time for the Bidwells to fork out some cash or they’ll have more seasons like this.

  45. By riwjr on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Darren, What’s Derek Anderson’s status for Saturday?

  46. By Darren Urban on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    riwjr —

    RE: DA status

    Unknown. As of Monday, still was suffering headaches after working out.

  47. By Mike Ellingboe on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply


    Can’t say how personal things were between Q and the Whiz but it’s not uncommon for players to make statements like Boldin made when contract disputes are in play. Remember Lance Briggs’ comments about the Bears prior to getting a new contract? I noticed you don’t seem to have any acknowledgement or memory of the turnaround that took place when Michael Bidwell and Coach Whisenhunt took over, did you miss our 2008 & 2009 seasons?

  48. By UC on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Darren, you’re starting to tick me off, because I know your reading comprehension is better than this. My sarcasm wasn’t directed at you, it was directed at King Whiz’s nonsense, and if you read it as if it was directed at you then you read it wrong. Until you started crawling up my butt in this blog thread, I’ve never said anything that was critical of you. In fact, I’ve complemented you for the way you’ve run this site.

    But perhaps my esteem for you was misplaced, because if YOU bothered to do any investigative journalism yourself, you’d know that the Cards also passed the ball on 14 of the 16 3rd down plays Skelton had against Denver. That’s with a rookie QB, who’s making his first start. Is it wrong to expect a rookie QB a chance to gain some experience before forcing him to throw the ball 87.5% of the time on 3rd down in his first start, and then 92.9% of the time on 3rd down in his second start?

    I also never said the TEAM lies, I said KING WHIZ lies. News flash, Darren, the COACH is not the TEAM. I also didn’t say I know what’s going on behind closed doors, but what I DO know is what Q said in public. Downplay it all you want, but reasonable people will draw reasonable conclusions from that. I didn’t know you were so emotionally invested in King Whiz, but like I said earlier, you’re entitled to your opinion.

    And I also never said I want the Cards to run 67% of the time, that’s another sad product of your imagination. I wouldn’t care if they pass the majority of the time, I also wouldn’t care if they pass 90% of the time on 3rd down, AS LONG AS IT’S WORKING. But WHEN IT’S NOT WORKING, and is repeatedly NOT WORKING, and it continues to be done anyway, then there’s a coaching problem. Furthermore, I defy you to find ANY lengthy period of time for ANY QB in NFL history for whom passing the ball 90% of the time on 3rd down has been successful. I’ve only worked my way back to the Cards game 11 of this year, but it looks like the Cards have been passing about 70% of time on 3rd down, with a variety of QBs. It’s been continually NOT WORKING, yet King Whiz has kept doing it anyway.

    Yeah, you’re right Darren, it’s my opinion that the coaching staff has destroyed this season. Supporting my opinion is the fact that I think, and REALITY has borne out, that it’s assinine to make a rookie QB throw 90% of the time on 3rd down in his first two starts, when that tactic is FAILING 82% of the time. You, however, apparently subscribe to King Whiz’s magical thinking that stats don’t matter.

  49. By darrel on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Dude your acting like Darren urban can turn. Around the season. By himself he just the Writer for cardinals …. maybe u should just wait till next year that’s my advice ur life will lesss spent venting to the writer of the cardinals

  50. By DEVA BRATT WAR START AGAIN on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    darren –

    I’m not going to lie right but UC and Casey done buss your ass so many times i think you should consider throwing in the towel.

    Yeah the next time he posts something don’t even answer, just wave your white flag, bow down and beg for mercy. UC/Casey : millions darren : 0 🙂

  51. By TucsonTim on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    You can make all the excuses you want for the play calling, but what you had last Sunday were 2 really bad football teams with rookie QB’s. They were pretty evenly matched and should have had pretty much the same game plan. Defense, stop the run. Offense, run the ball and protect the rookie QB.

    Given that the talent level of the Cards is actually a little better, then you HAVE to look at coaching to explain such a debacle.

    I may not be as angry as UC, but for once I would like to hear Whiz take some responsibility for a loss and stop ALWAYS blaming it on the players failure to execute.

    After the Giants melt down the first words out of Coughlin’s mouth in the post game press conf were, I take full responsibility…

    Take some ownership of the problem and hold some coaches accountable, like a DC that allows Clausen a 100 pt rating and can’t stop obvious running situations. (and Clausen offering Skelton advise has got to be the seson’s lowest point for everyone in this organization)

  52. By allan on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Wiz made his bed at the start of the season. His bad decisions has affected the whole team. He desperately reached out to Max Hall to bail him out and as we all know that failed.
    His play calling sucks. Warner made him look like a genius. He is now exposed for what he is.
    Looks like the Steelers made the right choice in their head coach choice.

  53. By MikeTheHelmetFlorio on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Many thanks and happy hols!
    If u wouldn’t could you stop spamming my twitter feed RT morons who want to bring mcnabb here. Just ignore the clowns and keep truckin. Otherwise ill have to unfollow you and updates during games in Ireland are scarce. (cards only Irish fan here)
    Man I miss the offseason. Optimism on Stephen Williams. DD sleeper pick for DPOY. Bean wells and Calais having breakout years. Joey adding experience to lB corps. Early replacing Q, lol. leinarts time. Donie Henderson making our secondary elite.

    Of those listed, what’s been your biggest disappointment personally?

  54. By Darren Urban on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    MikeTheHelmet —

    RE: Disappointment

    Ultimately, it’d be the defense overall. I thought they’d hold up better and minimize the QB situation. I was wrong (although they would have had to be The Steel Curtain to have won many more games, I’d think).

  55. By MikeG on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Hey Darren–Looking forward to the Christmas night game against the Cowboys. Should be a fun night to cap off Christmas. I like the fact that the younger players are getting some time which will help them for next season. Seems like a lost season for Beanie with the surgery and his sickness the other week. Seems like he just can’t get into a playing groove. I can’t believe the fans dissing Whiz. He has done a great job here and deserves a pass for this season–this a a transition year with a lot of new players. One thing that will be important this week is how the Card’s handle the Dallas pash rush–I would like to see the Card’s throw more screen passes in this game to tame that pass rush. I like the fact that Mike Miller is being groomed into some playcalling he has a good mind for the game. Hey Darren –One thing the Card’;s do lead the league in—of all the new stadiums in the last 10 years–they have the best new stadium in the league . Of the new stadiums for football–Is there one you like nicer???

  56. By Darren Urban on Dec 22, 2010 | Reply

    MikeG —

    RE: Stadiums

    I haven’t been to a couple; Indy and Dallas come to mind. From my perspective (which includes the press box view plus views outside stadium) I like Seattle and Carolina a lot, since they are bigger press boxes and you can see the cityscape past the stadium.

  57. By Scott H on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Well, I wish Whiz’s philosophy involved more of a committment to the running game. The personnel obviously was well-suited for a pass-heavy attack when Warner was here and playing so well. Things have changed dramatically with Warner gone. But, unfortunately, Whiz has not been willing to change his philosophy to something more suited to the current personnel. Whatever. This team really hasn’t been the same since Haley left. Since Warner was still here last year, the offense was still potent, but…not as potent as in 2008. I just don’t get or like the set up with a run-game coordinator, a passing-game coordinator, and Whiz as the guy calling the plays. WTF??? Could we make it any more complicated??? Geez, just get the ONE GUY who can be the offensive coordinator and let him run the damn offense! Simple.

    Wish list for next year – ONE GUY running the offense and calling the plays ( one guy not named Ken Whisenhunt, by the way ), much more committment to the running game, that Beanie Wells will come back from wherever he’s been since the end of the 2009 season, that we will actually utilize a tight end as a pass-catcher in our offense, up-grades along the offensive line, Derek Anderson starting for another team in the NFC West, McNabb playing anywhere else but here, and a raise for Darren Urban!

  58. By Darthcard on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    I for the life of me cannot understand the absolute hate coming in for whiz. I also believe whis and graves have made some very bad moves this offseason. But Boone is perfect and this can be fixed. When whiz passes all the time maybe it’s because he has very little faith in the run game in those 3rd and 4 situations. Look I’ve seen valid points but Marc bulger? Really? Marc bulger hasn’t played good football in like 5 yrs. Poor guys been knocked around with concussions. If we signed Marc I would start thinking whis is clueless. My fellow cardinal fans please let this season die and realize Boone stays on top. We fell down hard. But will wevstay down or get up fighting. Darren your a great reporter..thank you.

  59. By BLOOD RED on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Hey UC,Whiz is the best coach AZ has ever seen.I don’t know exactly what your problem is but I think you need to move to San Francisco!!!The real Cardinal fans believe in the direction we are moving.Losing a hall of fame QB was not Whiz’s fault.Watch next year when we smash the nfc bet you jump right back on the wagon.You are exactly the type of fan I can’t stand.So I guess you are a defensive mastermind or something.We do have some things that need to be addressed but the coach and Michael Bidwell have a plan and the real fans believe in it.One bad year and you all jump off the wagon,good stay off!!

  60. By Peter in Canada on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Naturally the coaches take the blame when a season heads south. It goes with the territory. Luck also plays a part. Our season was done when Warner retired. Minnesota’s season was done when they bet the house that Favre had one last season in him. It looks like Green Bay’s season ended with the injury to Rogers. However this constant carping about Whiz’s play calling is just stupid and tiresome. Now his integrity and honesty are being called into question by some. I guess the next thing will be his sexuality.

    I don’t like the losing either but I think Skelton has shown that he can at least be a backup next year, and Williams, Washington and hopefully Schofield can be starters. If we solidify at QB, and draft well we can win the division next year.

  61. By Brad Fair on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    What many of you Whiz lovers are failing to realize is that most of our best players were all drafted by Dennis Green. That Super Bowl run really was Dennis Green’s team, and still is to an extent….Fitz, Boldin, Dansby, Rolle, Dockett, Leinart (although he wasnt given a real opportunity to run the team under Whiz), were all drafted by Green…Our best players on the team today were drafted by the Dennis Green regime (who was given a few years to turn around a cellar dweller for the past 15 years). Whiz has been and always will be overrated…i cant think of an impact player that he has drafted since coming here…wells has underachieved, hightower fumbles way too much, DRC is inconsistent, and LSH doesnt get nearly enough touches like he has earned, etc…alot of being a successful head coach is having the ability to draft, which Whiz does not possess unfortunately. sure, they have scouts and all of that, but that stilll falls on the HC. I truly believe that Whiz is a good coach at best, but average in my eyes….a great HC has competitive teams regardless of who comes and goes and drafts well (patriots, steelers, colts-desite consistently getting late picks) …Dennis Green handed Whiz the keys to a ferrari, but whiz has turned our talent pool into a pinto…

  62. By Adam on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply


    When we all write in about the horrible coaching and the lack of effort that this team gives yOu seem to always want to throw last year in our face. Kurt Warner, Anquan Boldin, Sean MOrey, Antrel Role, Bertrand Berry, Carlos Dansby and other guys that understood the game covered most of Whisenhunts weaknesses. The last 2 seasons prior to this year Whisenhunt didn’t even have to coach those teams because there were guys on that team that knew how to win already. Those 2 years had winners on them. I don’t want to hear about last year. That is long gone. The Superbowl year is long gone. There is enough talent on this team that should have atleast 6 wins right now but they don’t because Whisenhunt has to really coach and he doesn’t know how. His staff is imcompetent and not detailed leaders. Whisenhunt is too nice and still trying to find himself. Excuses! Excuses! Excuses! Have you ever heard of a Hedgehog Concept?? Whats the Cardinals hedgehog concept? They don’t have an identity because Whisenhunt is afraid to lead. And he doesn’t surround himself with intelligent and bright coaches.

    Let me give you a lot of reasons why this is all Whisenhunts fault. You may have heard of these reasons. Here they are.

    Clark Haggans
    Joey Porter (Pro bowl)
    Adrian Wilson (Pro bowl)
    Dominique Rogers (Pro bowl)
    Darnel Dockett (Pro bowl)
    Calais Campbell (High draft Pick)
    Gerald Hayes
    Kerry Rhodes

    Beanie Wells (1st Round)
    Tim Hightower
    Steve Breaston
    Larry Fitzgerald
    Early Doucet
    Alan Faneca
    Levi Brown
    Lyle Sendlein

    Need I say more???? No more excuses!!! This coaching staff has a ton of talent on this team. They are just plain horrible. We don’t want to hear about last year or the Superbowl year. The only good coach that Whisenhunt hired was Todd Haley and I heard he ran the offense so what did Whisenhunt do to get the team to the Superbowl and the playoffs last year.

  63. By Adam on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    Also, no matter what Whisenhunt does on offense if he keeps Billy Davis the team can count on having the same season as this year. Billy Davis’ defenses always give up a ton of points. He is a poison to this team. Clancy Pendergass was better than him and he was horrible. Please get rid of him and try to get a coach that knows what he is doing. The weak, expose themself during adversity and Whisenhunt has been blaming everyone else on the team except himself. When will you take the blame for your men? Its ok to accept responsibility for running a horrible ship. I thought this team would go 5-11 but by the Cards getting basically dominated by the worst team in the NFL has brought this team to a new low. Maybe we can get McNabb but he is fat now. I don’t know what free agent would want to come to this organization and play. It’s back to the NFC EAST days. SO sad. So many people like WHiz and so do I. But I like him as a person and people on here like him as a coach… crying give him a chance. He is too nice and players blatantly take advantage of him and don’t respect him. You can tell by the comments in the press. No one on this team respects Whiz so why should we? 4-12 this year and maybe worse next year. How does this happen?

  64. By kedo on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    one word ( worst )
    thank for 2008 season.

  65. By Chuck 1 on Dec 21, 2010 | Reply

    I think that Graves should order Whiz to have Bill Davis or Henderson call the plays.
    Or maybe DA from the sky box???
    Or how about Michael? That could be a first!!!
    Any of them could do just as well as Whiz has done.
    How many times has Whiz called pass plays on 3rd and short?

  66. By eazy e on Dec 22, 2010 | Reply

    Leinart sucks weak arm no accuracy

  67. By vinny rosato on Dec 22, 2010 | Reply

    @ UC you have major issues! I can’t believe that you would speak of the Cardinals like you know them so well, and the people that say they don’t want to spend there money on the AZ Cardinals are the real bandwagon fans. I wonder what you were saying about Whiz when his game planning and whole system is what took us to the super bowl, and you can say OH we went because of Kurt Warner when Warner him self would tell you it wasn’t all him. The only other team he went to the super bowl with before the cards was mike marts and the rams tell me why he didn’t go with the giants. If you were a real fan you would be used to bad seasons from the past years. I wouldn’t be over reacting on the season we had this season with a lot of leadership losses, and there are times where our team is showing a lot of potential. You want my opinion you can take your money elsewhere we don’t need yours or other bandwagon fans opinions. GO CARDS and GO SKELTON THE FUTURE OF THE CARDS !!!!

  68. By shockingbird on Dec 22, 2010 | Reply

    Darren, first off great job. My favorite point you’ve made this year is that football is a luxury and should be regarded as such.

    On to the Cardinals. I was born in Phoenix and was just a kid when I first saw the fireworks coming from ASU stadium in Tempe from my bedroom window. I’ve been to one game at ASU stadium against the Lions. I now live on the east coast and follow the team online. The Super Bowl was truly a brilliant game.

    When we talk about this team I think most will agree we have some great talent. Yes the QB play has been poor to promising, but no where near the level it’s been for the past few years. That said I think the real reason behind this season is leadership. When we look at the departure of our notable players they all had one thing in common, they were leaders. They set the tone, the played with optimism when things went against the team. Kurt is a leader first, accurate passer second, and prolific fumbler third ;-)(Stats back me up on that point)

    Along with leadership comes competitiveness. Kurt Warner commented during a Ravens game this year, that Anquan is one of the bet competitors he’s ever played with. Coming from a hall of fame quarter back who had been in three super bowls and in the league for 10 years that’s a high compliment to say the least.

    Dansby was the voice and leader of our defense. Nothing against A-dub, I think he puts every bit of himself into the games and leaves it all out on the field.

    Once the players are in that huddle it’s up to them. The coaches and fans are not out on the field. Talent will get you so far, but sound leadership in that huddle is paramount. I understand why Whiz holds that intangible so high and why he thought DA would bring more of that than ML. Whiz wants a championship not just to win games. You can’t be the best without leaders on the field.

    Leaders inspire the others to play their best and also to not overplay. That’s a huge point. Overplay. When an individual player gets in the mode of trying to do to much to rescue the team, he will miss assignments, throw a senseless pick, overrun coverage, and just flat out get burnt trying to look at too many options for a single play. A-Dub in my opinion has suffered from overplay this year. DRC has felt uninspired and, I think, when Denver immediately started picking on him his pride showed up and he played at the level he was at last year.

    Leadership and competitiveness, emphasis on the leadership, are absent from this team this year, not talent nor skill. This must be integrated into personnel choices in the off season. One more year to find a way to get Larry his due. If not I wound’t mind seeing him leave for Atlanta. Not that I want him to go but he doesn’t need to be another Barry Sanders. Immense talent on a hapless team.

    I don’t know if McNabb would bring leadership. He’s seems to be a big goof ball and I don’t know if that would mix well with Whiz. Orton if available might be an interesting choice. Denver had the fourth ranked offense coming into the game against the Cardinals.

    Go Cards agains the Cowboys.

  69. By johnnybluenose on Dec 22, 2010 | Reply

    last year, when we were pretty decent, i could understand why russ grimm was being talked about as a head coach in waiting. but i don’t understand it this year. our offense is bad, unimaginative, undisciplined, unmotivated and some of that is because of our offensive line play. so, why the continued interest in grimm? we will go 4 and 12 this year. and someone wants one of our coaches to be their head coach next year. as vince lombardi used to say, ” DARREN, WHAT THE HELL’S GOING ON AROUND HERE? “

  70. By SteveDCO on Dec 22, 2010 | Reply

    Adam – You listed 16 players. I’m pretty sure it is a 53 man roster and you have to have 11 on the field at all times. (Unless you are Philly on an on-side kick)

    Every team has some great and some good players. We just don’t have enough especially at the LB spot. We all knew this when the final cuts were made and saw how short this team was at LB.

    You listed several players who are the issue.

    Porter – 5 sacks this year. Read PFT, he will be cut in the off season.
    Hayes – Can’t even be active on game day
    Doucet – Read his draft status. Injury prone and has drops. Sounds like his pro career too.
    Haggens – Will probably come back just becuase we are so short at OLB.

    Brad Fair – You understand we have a GM named Rod Graves. He has done all the draftinjg from 2002. Did Green have input, yes, but Graves is the GM.

    You think last years draft class is bad? 5 of 6 are playing and making solid contibutions. 5 of 6 will be here next year and there is a chance all 5 will be starting. Drey and Schofield may be 1st on the bench though.

  71. By Adam on Dec 22, 2010 | Reply

    No one can convince me on here that this team doesn’t have the talent to be atleast a 6 win team right now. That is all coaching. The Cardinals went into Carolina and Billy Davis’ defense got dominated by an offense that is last in basically every statistcal category. Carolina is last in first downs. Last in ponits scored. Last in big plays. Last in 3rd down conversions. Last. Last. Last. Last. Last. And the Cardinals got trounced by them.

    Everyone on here who doesn’t really know true leadership wants to keep bringing up last year and the Superbowl sesaon. Well, keep living off that. I hope it makes you feel good to throw that in our face. Keep living in the past. YOu’re like the high school football player who was all league but never did anything in college and wants to brag about the championship season he had… forever. Let go!! Let go of the last 2 seasons. They are long gone. The people on here that have studied the Cardinals for the last 3 years and including this season know that the things that we are complaining about now are the same things that were going on during those years. The wins were just covering them up. Continuous offensive penalties, giving up a ton of points at the end of games, players not giving their all. Whisenhunts team for the last 3-4 seasons that he has been here have all been undisciplined. Coach Whiz has brought in horrible coaches that make him look bad. I would never bring in a coach that wasnt as smart as me.. You have to bring in coaches as smart as you or smarter. The what great coaches do. How hard is that????

  72. By Andrew on Dec 22, 2010 | Reply

    Darren said, “No matter who is coordinating the offense and/or calling plays, it’s still going to be Whiz’s philosophy.”

    That philosophy needs to change with changing personnel — something that has not happened this year. It is reminiscent of head coaches that come in and talk about running the ball, only to fail when that approach does not match the personnel on the team. Wiz needs to swallow his pride along with his playbook and bring a game plan that matches his players’ strengths and weaknesses.

  73. By brad oneill on Dec 22, 2010 | Reply

    My gut feeling on whiz not bringing up the other guy calling some plays is he didnt want to throw the guy under the bus in the midst of a really bad losing streak and he let it come to light after finally getting a win.

    as for the play calling not being a problem that is ridiculous. the play calling has been a huge problem. any time you have a quarterback that is hitting 50% of his throws including short ones and you call a passing play on third and short you have a problem. if you have a manning or brady sure go for it all day long but not when you have a guy that only gives you a 50/50 shot at best. im not even going to talk about the 3rd and nothings where we completed passes for less than nothing.

  74. By JT on Dec 22, 2010 | Reply

    Hey Darren,

    Happy Holidays to you and your family!

    What are your thoughts on trading A. Wilson and bringing some new draft talent to fill the gap? I’ve been a season ticket holder for many years and although I hate to admit it, Wilson and our secondary have been EXPOSED in the last few games. I really don’t understand why we haven’t focused on a real defensive “leader” at the MLB position. During the Pedergast era, I understood bringing Wilson into the box for pass rush, but why now? Trade Wilson and shore up the safety position with a real safety! Bring in some new talent or a quality FA at the MLB position to stop the run. It’s way too much to expect Dockett to carry the plug-stopper every down…If you’re gonna keep Wilson, move him to OLB already!

    Finally, I have to say that I LOVE KING WHIZ! But I really wish he would step up and bring in a OC. Whether or not he’s been the play caller, it’s way too much for him to handle these days. What the heck happened to the Chicago Bears Offensive? Not Jay Cutler…Mike Martz. Nuff’ said.

  75. By Darren Urban on Dec 22, 2010 | Reply

    JT —

    RE: Wilson

    Adrian isn’t going anywhere, via trade or position change.

  76. By Eazy E on Dec 22, 2010 | Reply

    McNabb>Orton, Palmer, Hasselbeck, Bulger

  77. By Eazy E on Dec 22, 2010 | Reply

    McNabb is better than Orton, Palmer, Hasselbeck, Bulger

  78. By TD7 on Dec 23, 2010 | Reply

    I do think Skelton is the answer at QB. He has a strong, accurate arm and good mobility for a man his size. He is a 22yr old rookie (Max Hall is 25yrs old). Skelton’s reading defenses, getting acclimated to the speed of the NFL and repetition with the 1’s will make him better. He reminds me of Rothlisberger.. I think Skelton can become a Pro Bowler in time .. draft OL and Defense.. Skelton is a keeper.. give him the keys and roll with him..

  79. By Adam on Dec 23, 2010 | Reply


    Yeah, 5 of 6 of last years draft class will possibly be starting. So what if they are starting. This coaching staff isn’t developing them. This coaching staff doesn’t develop any player. They don’t know how. Are you paying attention to the development of the young players on this team??? It’s going no where. Its Whisenhunts fault for hiring such incompetent coaches that aren’t detailed like him. You have just proved my point even more about the talent issue. This team has a ton of talent and can’t get the most out of them. Or get them to play discipline. Steve DCO you don’t know football. I don’t want to here about 53 man roster. That’s a given. YOu want me to name all 53 players???? Every team has a nucleus of talent. This team isn’t short of talent. Carolina didn’t have close to the same talent that the Cardinals have and look what happen. And both teams had a rookie QB starting. What was the outcome??? Cardinals Loss. NO Cardinals trounced by Carolina. SteveDco, You watch football but you don’t pay attention to the details and how great coaches are good at developing players. Every team has talent and the Cardinals have a lot of it. They have enough to be atleast at 6 wins right now. I’m not commenting on Stveve DCO the sensitive fan anymore. Pay attention to the details. All great coaches have a knack of getting their teams to play hard for them. Whisenhunt doesn’t have that. This team has been gving a lackluster effort since game 6.

    Again.. Let me say it again. One, he’s (WHisenhunt) too nice. Two, he’s not detailed. Three, he hasn’t established an identity of not knowing what he wants to be, a passing team or a running team. You don’t know what you are talking about. 53 guys??? So I guess I should name the practice players as well because they contribute and are a part of this team as well. Get outta heeya!!!!

  80. By Adam on Dec 23, 2010 | Reply


    You just proved my point about talent on this team. If 5 out of 6 draft pickswill be starting next year. That means they are not short of talent. My main concern is that the coaches aren’t devloping the players and it shows. YOu want me to name all 53 guys???? Thats a given it takes all 53. So I guess I should name the practice guys too then. Whisenhunt is making himself look bad by the coaching he is bringing in to help him.

    This team has more talent than the Panthers and look what happen. And the both had a rookie QB starting. What was the outcome?? Panthers trouncing the Cardinals. Let’s just move on to next year, so when the team struggles again, every sensitive fan on here can throw the superbowl year in our faces again. Keep living off that. Next year it will be 3 years removed from the Superbowl. Move on!! It’s time see if Whiz can rebuild this team and make it relevant again. I don’t think he can. Again, Whisenhunts too nice, he’s not detailed and he has hired coaches that aren’t even as smart as he is let alone smarter than him. Do some research on what a hedgehog concept is and let me know if the Cardinals have one.

  81. By BLOOD RED on Dec 24, 2010 | Reply

    Good draft this year and a new defensive coordinator and we smash NFC west next year for sure.I think some of you might be right about Bill Davis.With as much talent as we have on d we should be like Ravens and Steelers.(I really feel that).Get the shutdown d going and Skelton or whoever is tossing the rock for us will be fine.Get the run tandem Of Wells and Hightower pumpin,play some old school smashmouth football so us proud Cardinal fans can talk some trash about manhandlin some of these kids we play against.Bidwell and Whiz have a plan and I know next year will show our true identity.Great D and pound the rock(Watch and see baby)ROCK N ROLL REDBIRDS!!!!!

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