The Arizona Cardinals could be on the verge of welcoming back a familiar face to their organization. Earlier today, the Pittsburgh Steelers gave the Cardinals permission to interview offensive coordinator Todd Haley.
Arizona recently relieved Ken Whisenhunt from his head coaching duties. Though Whisenhunt did lead the Cardinals to the Super Bowl in 2008, Arizona only had two winning seasons in Whisenhunt’s six-year tenure.
It was only five years ago that Haley first joined Arizona as their offensive coordinator, and was there for two seasons. After contributing to the Cardinals’ only Super Bowl appearance in franchise history, Haley went on to take over the Kansas City Chiefs as head coach for three seasons before becoming Pittsburgh’s OC.
Haley’s history of bumping heads with players is probably the first thing that comes to mind whenever he his mentioned. Spats with everyone from Kurt Warner to Ben Roethlisberger always precedes his reputation as one of the game’s best offensive minds.
I don’t know if Cardinals fans are completely ecstatic about the possible return of Haley, but I think it is safe to say that Roethlisberger will be happy if Haley goes back to the desert. Big Ben expressed his genuine dislike of Haley’s play calling during this season. Roethlisberger should definitely welcome the chance of getting a new offensive coordinator in the event that Haley is chosen as Arizona’s new head coach.
The only uncertainty for the Steelers is who will be considered to replace Haley if he does leave. If they decide to look in-house, I think that running backs coach Kirby Wilson could be a potential candidate.
As for the Cardinals, if Haley does become Arizona’s new head coach, he’ll have the daunting task of finding a quarterback that can be trusted for an entire season. In addition, Haley would have to drastically improve a Cardinals rushing attack that was dead last in the NFL this season.
The best of luck to Haley, or whoever is “fortunate” enough to become Arizona’s new head coach.
Follow me on Twitter @ClydeASpeller