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2-8-11: Arizona Cardinals Bird Droppings

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Links for today, including updates from Somers and Urban on the Defensive Coordinator situation. news: Cardinals pursue Steelers assistant Butler for DC position
The Arizona Cardinals are formally pursuing Pittsburgh Steelers linebackers coach Keith Butler for their vacant defensive coordinator position, according to league sources.

Cards ask for permission UPDATE
The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette is reporting (in Ed Bouchette’s chat) that the Cards have asked the Steelers for permission to interview Keith Butler for the vacant defensive coordinator position. The report also says the Steelers have yet to give an answer. Given that Whisenhunt and Butler have known each other for so long, I’d think the interview would be more about specifics — like Butler’s contract desires, for instance — than defensive substance. Kent Somers is reporting the Cards have asked permission for a second candidate, but doesn’t name a name. I wouldn’t be surprised if the other comes from Green Bay (I’d think the Pittsburgh report would cover any possible Steelers, right?). Packers assistant head coach Winston Moss and safeties coach Darren Perry are the Green Bay coaches that have been mentioned. blogs - Kent Somers - Cardinals make requests
The Cardinals have made requests to interview at least two candidates for their defensive coordinator's position, but there is no word yet on if that permission has been granted blogs - Kent Somers - Coordinator in waiting
The Cardinals have officially requested permission to interview assistant coaches with the Packers and Steelers, but have not heard back from either team yet.

Cardinals request permission to speak to three coordinator candidates | ProFootballTalk
A radio report by Mike Jurecki of XTRA 910 in Arizona says the Cardinals have settled on their next defensive coordinator and it will be Steelers secondary Coach Ray Horton. Another report from Arizona Republic writer Kent Somers suggests that it may be premature to say Butler has the job. Somers writes that the Cardinals requested permission to speak with Steelers linebacker coach Keith Butler, Horton, and Packers linebackers coach Winston Moss.

Not A Job But A Calling
Many moving parts for Miller, staff in play decisions

Finding that next QB
Two reports over the last 24 hours regarding the Cards’ search for another quarterback caught the eye, for different reasons.

Larry Fitzgerald Wants Kevin Kolb Or Marc Bulger As Cardinals QB - SB Nation Arizona
Adam Schefter has written that the Cardinals have had conversations with Larry Fitzgerald about the team's quarterback situation. We know that one of the issues that must be resolved for the Cardinals to be able to sign Fitzgerald to a contract extension is that of who will be throwing him the ball. Fitz has made it very clear that what he wants to do more than anything is win. He wants to come back to the Cardinals, but he also wants it to be a situation in which he believes they will be a playoff team and have the talent to make it back to the Super Bowl. He also wants to be paid, as he well deserves. Without knowing exactly the context of these conversations with Fitzgerald, it is interesting that his thoughts were right in line with what pretty much the team would prefer and what fans are hoping. His first recommendation was Philadelphia's Kevin Kolb and he also brought up soon-to-be free agent Marc Bulger.

Larry Fitzgerald not making Arizona Cardinals' quarterback decision, Ken Whisenhunt says
Arizona Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt and receiver Larry Fitzgerald have discussed the team's options at quarterback for 2011, the coach said Sunday morning, but the discussion was part of Whisenhunt's normal relationship with players. "You're very aware that we have an open-door policy," Whisenhunt said. "We solicit input from players on a lot of things, game plans, plays, travel to the East Coast. Things in training camp. When I was interviewed (in 2007), they had players who were a portion of the interviews. "Larry and I talked about a number of things. I've talked to other players as well."

Steve Nash's 15 assists help Phoenix Suns beat Golden State Warriors
Steve Nash had 14 points and 15 assists, leading the Phoenix Suns to a 104-92 victory over the Golden State Warriors on his 37th birthday Monday night.

Phoenix Coyotes shutout Colorado Avalanche at home
Ilya Bryzgalov is back. The Coyotes goaltender, who had suffered through two humbling defeats on consecutive nights, came through with his second consecutive shutout as the Coyotes scored a 3-0 win over the Colorado Avalanche on Monday night in front of 9,508 at Arena.

Arizona Cardinals Begin Pursuit of Pittsburgh Steelers Assistant Keith Butler | Bleacher Report
Arizona Cardinals head coach Ken Whisenhunt has reportedly made good on his promise to request permission to interview Steelers linebacker coach Keith Butler earlier today.

Arizona Cardinals: Ken Whisenhunt Asks Larry Fitzgerald's Advise On QB Situation | Bleacher Report
ESPN's Adam Schefter has reported that Arizona Cardinals head coach Ken Whisenhunt has approached star wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald for advice about available, or potentially available, quarterbacks the team could add in the near future.

Arizona Cardinals: How Should They Handle Larry Fitzgerald Contract Negotiation? | Bleacher Report
Would Larry Fitzgerald really consider remaining with a team like the Cardinals?

10 NFC West thoughts after Super Bowl - NFC West Blog - ESPN
Ten thoughts relating at least tangentially to the NFC West following the Green Bay Packers' 31-25 victory against the Pittsburgh Steelers in the Super Bowl:

Vegas Oddsmakers, People Playing Madden Just More Evidence That Cardinals Are Not Good - Desert Dirt - SB Nation Arizona
I know. We know it. The Arizona Cardinals were bad this year. The 5-11 record, the carousel of quarterbacks, the loss to the Carolina Panthers, the number five pick in the 2011 NFL Draft all are evidence of it. But now we have new empirical evidence of the fact that the Cardinals are bad. Gaming trends on Madden NFL '11 and Vegas odds-makers setting futures bets confirm what we have known all along.

2011 NFL Trade Rumors: 10 Reasons Dealing for Kevin Kolb Is a Mistake | Bleacher Report
Now that the NFL season has come to an end, teams across the league shift their focus to figuring out a way to improve their team for next year and beyond. With a number of notable quarterbacks hitting the open trade market, many bottom-tier teams will have a decision to make as far as who they have their eye on. One quarterback who has been and will continue to be a hot name throughout this off-season is Kevin Kolb.

(for those of you who are not fans of him after I posted the pro-Kolb article yesterday)

Tennessee Titans assistant Mike Munchak promoted to coach - ESPN
The Tennessee Titans have hired Mike Munchak as the franchise's 16th head coach, deciding to promote from within to replace Jeff Fisher. news: NFL was aware of seat issues; ousted fans to receive XLVI tix
The NFL knew last week there were problems with the installation of temporary Super Bowl seating sections and hoped until hours before kickoff that they could be fixed.

Audio: Rodgers swings back at Cowherd - NFC North Blog - ESPN
You're going to see and hear Green Bay Packers players everywhere for the next few days. As we noted earlier, quarterback Aaron Rodgers will appear on "The Late Show with David Letterman" Monday night. You won't want to miss that, and I don't think you'll want to miss Rodgers' interview Monday morning with ESPN Radio's Colin Cowherd. Many of you have asked why Cowherd has been so reluctant to include Rodgers in his grouping of elite NFL quarterbacks. Apparently, Rodgers has been wondering the same. "Now I hope I can live up to your standards of being an elite quarterback," Rodgers told Cowherd, who laughed and noted the sarcasm.

America Agrees: The Black Eyed Peas Halftime Show Was Even Worse Than Expected - From Our Editors -
The Black Eyed Peas performance at halftime of Super Bowl XLV has inspired a lot of reactions, but even by any traditional standards for uproar, a nationwide backlash is pretty unprecedented. Nevertheless, click the graphic above and you will that in a poll by ESPN's SportsNation (love you Beadle!), every single state in America gave the show a solid 'F'.

What did the Super Bowl tell us about NFL offenses? | National Football Post
For players and coaches in the NFL there is a basic routine when it comes to starting your offseason film study. Break down your divisional opponents: personnel, schemes, top concepts, etc. That is a top priority heading into spring, (hopeful) mini-camps and OTAs.

Tennessee Titans fire O-coordinator Mike Heimerdinger - ESPN
Titans coach Mike Munchak has fired offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger as he starts to remake his coaching staff a day after taking over the top job.

Wheels are in motion for a Super Bowl lawsuit | ProFootballTalk
The 400 fans who bought tickets to the Super Bowl that didn’t result in seats at the Super Bowl have been offered a triple refund and a ticket to next year’s game. It remains to be seen whether and to what extent any of them want it.

Sean Payton’s move to Dallas sparks criticism in New Orleans | ProFootballTalk
Sean Payton initially brought up the idea of living in Dallas when he first accepted the Saints job. Owner Tom Benson and G.M. Mickey Loomis didn’t support the idea.

North Texas widely panned as Super Bowl host | ProFootballTalk
The folks in Indianapolis must have loved the events in North Texas over the last week. They have to be thinking: No matter how cold it gets here in February 2012, we’re bound to be an improvement over Dallas as a Super Bowl host city.