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1-21-11: Arizona Cardinals Bird Droppings

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Some stuff for today.

Whisenhunt Taking Time With DC
Interviews lined up for next week's Senior Bowl; candidates remain in playoffs

Espo: Ending Cards' defensive coordinator search -
The Arizona Cardinals' search for a defensive coordinator is starting to feel an awful lot like my days in middle school. There have been lots of rumors, lots of names being called, some awkward rejection (reportedly) and it is taking forever to come to an end. Many believe Keith Butler, linebackers coach of the Pittsburgh Steelers, is the name that Ken Whisenhunt and the Cards are zeroing in on. I think they have the right city, just the wrong name.

Mailbag: Potential free agents to watch - NFC West Blog - ESPN
Adam from Glendale, Ariz., writes: Sando, first, I love your blog and I read it every day. I just don't know what the Cardinals are doing and would like your thoughts. They don't even appear to be looking for a defensive coordinator. Sean McDermott would have been a great fit in Arizona with the personnel we have. He loves to blitz and we have one of the best blitzing safeties out there and we needed to blitz last year because we weren't creating pressure with our front seven. We don't even want to talk to him. All of the big-name, proven coordinators are gone. What are we waiting for, a Steelers assistant to come over and receive a promotion? C'mon, Sando. Ken Whisenhunt is blowing it. Or maybe he is gonna take over some of the defensive plays. Russ Grimm (if he doesn't leave us) can coach defensive line as well to add to his fifth title. Donnie Henderson can coach defensive backs, receivers and help call defensive packages.

Chat wrap: Smart to keep open options - NFC West Blog - ESPN
Chris (Broadview Heights, OH): How do you see Arizona addressing their glaring QB need in the offseason? My belief is they need to add a proven veteran AND draft a prospect in the first two rounds as their future QB prospect. But it's Arizona and the Bidwills, so I was wondering what you think will happen.

Arizona Cardinals waiting on 'right fit' for defensive coach
There was a decent shine on Ken Whisenhunt's loafers on Thursday, which might surprise some fans who think the Arizona Cardinals coach has dragged his feet in finding a defensive coordinator to replace Bill Davis. After firing two defensive coordinators in four years, Whisenhunt is searching for a better fit.

Arizona Cardinals: Who will be the starting quarterback?
This off-season, the Cardinals will look for a starting quarterback in all the usual places: the draft, free agency, the trade market, between couch cushions. Much depends upon the outcome of labor negotiations. Until a new collective bargaining agreement is reached, players can't be traded and free agents can't be signed. And the draft is three months away. But it's never too early to speculate, or to provide free advice to the Cardinals, who went through four quarterbacks in 2010 while trying to find a suitable replacement for Kurt Warner.

On the bright side: Arizona Cardinals - NFC West Blog - ESPN
The premise: We spend much of the offseason focusing on teams' problems. Matt Williamson of Scouts Inc. and I discussed some of those Friday during a wide-ranging conversation on the NFC West, but there were also some positives. I'll break out one for each team, starting with the Arizona Cardinals.

KTAR Audio
John "the Professor" Clayton told the guys he thinks Rob Ryan could be a viable option for the Cards' Defensive Coordinator...if they act fast.

KTAR Audio
Michael Lombardi joined the show to talk about the playoffs and the Cardinals defensive coordinator search.

Ilya Bryzgalov posts 19th career shutout in Phoenix Coyotes win over Los Angeles Kings
Ilya Bryzgalov posts 19th career shutout in Phoenix Coyotes win over Los Angeles Kings, Ilya Bryzgalov posted his 19th career shutout, leading Phoenix to a 2-0 win vs. the fading Los Angeles Kings on Thursday.

Talking DC at the Senior Bowl
As I wrote earlier in a story, Ken Whisenhunt will be interviewing multiple candidates for defensive coordinator at the Senior Bowl next week. And there are candidates from current playoff teams too (No, he didn’t say. Yes, I would be shocked if at least one of them isn’t working for the Steelers). As an FYI, permission is required right away to talk to any assistant coach. If a guy is under contract, getting that permission is necessary. If a coach’s contract is expiring, obviously, he is a "free agent" like a player would be, but there is a lag time of about a week-and-a-half before he is "free." Before then — for instance, if you want to talk to a guy right away after his season ends, whenever that might be — permission must still be granted.

2011 NFL Draft: Drafting Quarterbacks Isn't An Exact Science (Just Ask Bill Parcells) -
A formula that Bill Parcells developed to weed out quality NFL Draft quarterback prospects is still held in high regard, even after the formula has produced disastrous results over the past six years. Can science be applied to the NFL Draft? Even Parcells knows better.

Chan Gailey on Aaron Rodgers, Jay Cutler, Mark Sanchez, Ben Roethlisberger - Don Banks -
The Buffalo Bills this season were one of only three teams -- along with the Patriots and Dolphins -- to play all four of the clubs that remain alive in the NFL playoffs. Bills head coach Chan Gailey, a former collegiate quarterback at Florida and a longtime NFL offensive coordinator, agreed to assess the 2010 play of quarterbacks Ben Roethlisberger, Aaron Rodgers, Jay Cutler and Mark Sanchez for's Don Banks, in anticipation of Sunday's NFC and AFC Championship Games. Buffalo went 0-5 against the Steelers, Jets, Packers and Bears this season, losing by three points to both Pittsburgh and Chicago.

Amani Toomer sounds off on Eli Manning - NFL Nation Blog - ESPN
Former New York Giants wide receiver Amani Toomer has mixed feelings about quarterback Eli Manning's 2010 season.'s Ohm Youngmisuk caught up with Toomer at a Broadway play recently. Manning threw 31 touchdown passes last season, but he also had a league-high 25 interceptions.

Matt Cassel of Kansas City Chiefs selected for Pro Bowl - ESPN
Kansas City quarterback Matt Cassel has been added to the AFC roster for the Pro Bowl.

NFL Playoffs: Chicago Bears legend Gale Sayers is surprised by the Bears' success - ESPN Chicago
Gale Sayers admits he's surprised at the Bears' success this season.

Source: New England Patriots' Tom Brady has surgery, to be set for camp - ESPN Boston
Tom Brady had surgery on his foot Thursday and should be ready for training camp.

Antrel Rolle's complaining again - NFC East Blog - ESPN
New York Giants Pro Bowl safety Antrel Rolle waited until Week 2 of his first season with the club to go off on his head coach and teammates. You may recall the former Cardinals player complaining that Giants coach Tom Coughlin dropped the team off at the stadium too early in Indianapolis and he questioned the team's leadership skills. Things eventually calmed down and Rolle seemed to enjoy himself with his new team. He made some ridiculous comments about fans booing the Giants, but for the most part, he became well-liked by his new teammates. But as's Ohm Youngmisuk points out, Rolle was up to his old tricks while appearing on a radio show in Miami. He thinks Coughlin could stand to loosen up a bit more. You know, like the head coach who shares a home field with the Giants.