After five seasons with the Arizona Cardinals, head coach Bruce Arians has officially retired. Despite him denying a report in the last couple of weeks that he and the Cardinals were mutually parting ways, he has now decided to move on. During his tenure, he went 49-30-1. He gave the Cardinals two playoff appearances, including arguably the best season in franchise history in 2015. Though the last two seasons were marked by player injuries and inconsistency, health issues and wanting to spend time with family were apparently a bigger factor in Arians’ decision. Regardless, the retirement of Arians marks the end of an era (albeit a short one) in Arizona Cardinals history.
Bruce Arians Retires from the Arizona Cardinals
Arians has had an interesting history. He has been around in the league since the 1990’s. However, he first turned heads when he became the substitute coach for the Indianapolis Colts during Chuck Pagano‘s battle with cancer. He was then hired by the Cardinals in 2013. During this time, he and newly acquired quarterback Carson Palmer mostly had success. They had three 10 plus win season and two playoff appearances, including an NFC Championship appearance.
However, this season was rough, marked by injuries. In the very first regular season game, they lost rising star running back David Johnson for the season. Several weeks later they brought in Adrian Peterson and the Cardinals looked like a juggernaut. However, just one week later Palmer was lost ultimately for the season with a bad arm, leaving Arians with Drew Stanton and Blaine Gabbert.
Despite all of this, the Cardinals still went a respectable 8-8. They finished the season on a high note by winning three of their last four. They also knocked their rivals, the Seattle Seahawks, out of the playoffs with 26-24 win in Week 17. The game included a go-ahead 42-yard field goal from Phil Dawson in the final minutes and allowed Arians to finish off on a high note.
In a farewell emotional press conference where he confirmed his retirement, Arians said, “I probably didn’t truly know until that kick went through that I was going to retire. … It’s been an unbelievable journey.”
The Cardinals will now go into the off-season looking for a new head coach. They will be looking forward to the return of star players such as Johnson, Palmer, and John Brown. The next head coach of the Arizona Cardinals will likely inherit a decent roster, but will also have big shoes to fill.