9:45pm: In the newest update, ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reports that “the Cardinals have informed several head coaching candidates that they are out of the running.” The three candidates who have been announced to be involved in the second round of interviews (Flores, Anarumo, and Kafka) are reportedly the team’s finalists for the position.
The three candidates who have not been included in the second round of interviews yet (Joseph, Glenn, and Callahan) are among those who have been informed that they are no longer being considered.
5:49pm: The Cardinals made it known that they had at least two candidates who would be advancing to a second round of interviews for their vacant head coaching position yesterday. Now Steelers defensive assistant and linebackers coach Brian Flores will join Lou Anarumo and Mike Kafka as a finalist in Arizona, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.
This is the first name we’ve seen that lines up with an earlier report from last weekend. That report implied that, if the Cardinals were unable to bring in Sean Payton, whose rights were traded to the Broncos this past week, the team would be moving forward with Flores, Aaron Glenn, and Ejiro Evero for a second round of interviews. After yesterday’s announcement for Anarumo and Kafka, Flores’s inclusion is the first name that doesn’t come as a surprise.
Arizona is moving relatively slowly compared to the other franchises who have been working to hire a new head coach this offseason and, as a result, have missed out on a few promising candidates. Of the 10 candidates interviewed by the Cardinals, four are no longer available. Besides Payton, Dan Quinn made the decision to remain in Dallas as defensive coordinator, Evero has been hired as the defensive coordinator in Carolina, Frank Reich has been hired as the Panthers’ head coach, and DeMeco Ryans, who actually cancelled his interview, has taken the head coaching position in Houston.
That leaves Arizona with its three finalists (Flores, Anarumo, and Kafka), the rumored finalist who has not been announced as a candidate for a second interview (Glenn), Bengals offensive coordinator Brian Callahan, who interviewed this week, and their own defensive coordinator for the last four seasons, Vance Joseph. Anarumo is set to meet virtually with general manager Monti Ossenfort on Friday, while Kafka’s virtual interview is expected to take place on Tuesday.
Flores is expected to interview for the Cardinals’ job on Wednesday. The day before, Flores is expected to interview for the Broncos defensive coordinator position under Payton. He is also a top candidate for the Vikings defensive coordinator job.
With three finalists named for the position so far, here is the updated breakdown of the Cardinals’ interview process:
- Lou Anarumo, defensive coordinator (Bengals): To conduct second interview 2/10
- Brian Callahan, offensive coordinator (Bengals): Interviewed 2/2; no longer being considered
- Ejiro Evero, defensive coordinator (Broncos): Interviewed; potential finalist; hired as Panthers DC
- Brian Flores, linebackers coach (Steelers): Interviewed 1/23; favorite?; To conduct second interview 2/8
- Aaron Glenn, defensive coordinator (Lions): Interviewed 1/21; potential finalist; no longer being considered
- Vance Joseph, defensive coordinator (Cardinals): Interviewed 1/18; no longer being considered
- Mike Kafka, offensive coordinator (Giants): To conduct second interview 2/7
- Dan Quinn, defensive coordinator (Cowboys): Conducted second interview 1/25; to stay with Cowboys
- Sean Payton, former head coach (Saints): Interviewed 1/26
- Frank Reich, former head coach (Colts): Interviewed 1/17
- DeMeco Ryans, defensive coordinator (49ers): Interview cancelled, prefers Texans’ job