How many of you would be content if you heard that your job was on the line? If rumors were circling in the office or break room or anywhere else, would you be okay listening to the whispers that you would soon be without a place to work?
Apparently, Cardinals head coach Steve Wilks is completely fine with it.
As the losses have stacked up throughout the season, members of the media have continuously asked Wilks what he thinks of the rumors that he may be let go after his inaugural season as Arizona’s head coach. Each time, Wilks replies that he does not ‘listen to the outside noise’ or that he is ‘keeping his head down and working, trying to keep the team competitive.’ No matter the question, he has replied with a “coachspeak” answer.
Before Sunday’s game against the Rams, ESPN insider Adam Schefter reported that the Cardinals plan to let Wilks go and relieve him of his duties after this season. Later that day, after another double digit loss to the Rams, Wilks was asked yet again if he had spoken with upper management about his job status and his future.
Again, Wilks responded with humility, but none of it seemed entirely honest.
“I will say this: I walked into this organization with integrity and whenever that time comes, I’ma walk out with integrity,” Wilks said. “And hopefully, that’s 12, 15 years from now.
It almost seems as if Wilks sees the writing on the wall, and he has undoubtedly heard the rumors, but he still will not directly acknowledge them. Of course, the biggest reason to do this would be to maintain his reputation so that he can find a position elsewhere once he is let go.
He isn’t the first coach in history to act like nothing is bothering him and he certainly won’t be the last, either.
It just seems to be a bit counterintuitive to act like everything is fine though, doesn’t it? I get that if he didn’t want to, he probably would never have to work again, especially since he will still get paid on this contract for the extent of the terms if he is fired after this season. That will add up to millions of dollars. But at some point, you would think his survival instinct would kick in and he would be fighting harder for his job. And perhaps behind closed doors, he is. Maybe he has been completely dishonest to the media in saying that he has not spoken with Steve Keim and Michael Bidwill about his future.
Either way, it’s an interesting paradox. If Wilks truly is just letting fate come to him instead of being proactive in trying to save his own job, maybe that is exactly the type of lax demeanor that has failed him in this dismal Cardinals season.