The Arizona Cardinals have come up in a coaching rumor, only this time it is not about longtime Steelers defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau. While it has been reported for some time the Cardinals are interested in LeBeau with Bruce Arians, who was a Steelers position coach and also offensive coordinator in Pittsburgh, ESPN's Adam Schefter is reporting the Cardinals are also interested in interviewing Mike Nolan, defensive coordinator of the Atlanta Falcons.
While some national reports have taken that to mean they would like to hire him as defensive coordinator, local reporter and radio host Mike Jurecki indicated Nolan would be considered as a senior defensive advisor, as LeBeau has been expected to be if hired by Arizona.
Arizona is reportedly considering two in-house candidates to be promoted to defensive coordinator -- defensive backs coach Nick Rapone, considered the favorite, and outside linebackers coach James Bettcher.
The team would consider Nolan if unable to add LeBeau to the staff. He is the team's first choice.
Head coach Bruce Arians does not have a direct connection with Nolan. They have not crossed paths on any NFL staff. However, they share a connection with Todd Bowles, who was the Cardinals DC until hired by the New York Jets to be their head coach.
As a defensive coordinator, Nolan twice had Bowles on his staff -- with the Jets in 2000 and with the Dolphins in 2010 and 2011. Nolan also coached John Abraham, who has been with the Cardinals for two seasons.