When one takes a gander at the coaching records of Ken Whisenhunt’s and Bruce Arians’ predecessors in comparison to their own successes in Arizona---here is the rub:
1988-1989 Gene Stalllings/Hank Kuhlmann: 12-20 (.375)
1990-1993 Joe Bugel: 20-44 (.313)
1994-1995 Buddy Ryan: 12-20 (.375)
1996-2000 Vince Tobin: 28-43 (.394); Playoffs: 1-1 (.500)
2000-2003 Dave McGinnis: 17-40 (.298)
2004-2006 Dennis Green: 16-32 (,333)
2007-2012 Ken Whisenhunt: 45-51 (.469); Playoffs: 4-2 (.667)
2013-2017 Bruce Arians: 49-30-1 (.619); Playoffs: 1-2 (.333)
2018: Steve Wilks: 3-13 (.188)
* Only 1 head coach has an above .500 winning percentage: Bruce Arians
* Only 1 head coach has an above .500 winning percentage in the playoffs: Ken Whisenhunt
* Only 2 head coaches have won the NFC West title: Ken Whisenhunt (2008, 2009), Bruce Arians (2015)
* Only 3 head coaches have taken the Cardinals to the playoffs: Vince Tobin, Ken Whisenhunt, Bruce Arians
* No Arizona Cardinals’ head coach has been inducted into the Cardinals’ Ring of Honor as of yet
* The Cardinals’ 31 year record in Arizona is 202-293-1 (.407), which translates to a 6.5-9.5 yearly record.
* In 31 years the Cardinals have only made the playoffs 5 times.
Ring of Honor:
With the recent announcement of QB Carson Palmer as the 18th inductee in the Cardinals Ring of Honor, one could readily assume that Bruce Arians, as the winningest coach in the history of the Arizona Cardinals will be a shoe-in, when the appropriate time comes.
But, what’s fascinating is that one could cogently argue that Ken Whisenhunt is just as or more deserving than Arians---that is if one measures head coaching success vis-a-vis playoff records. Plus, when one looks back at the playoff games that Whisenhunt won, check this out:
W 30-24 over Falcons (home)
W 33-13 over Panthers (away)
W 51-45 (OT) over Packers (home)
L 15-49 to Saints (away)
By comparison, here are Arians’ playoff results:
L 16-27 to Panthers (away)* (Palmer and Stanton out)
W 28-22 over Packers (home)
L 15-49 to Panthers (away) in NFC Championship Game.
NFC West Titles:
Best Regular Season Record:
Winningest Regular Season Stretch:
Bruce Arians: 34-14 (2013-2015)
Winningest Playoff Stretch:
Ken Whisenhunt: 4-2 (2008-2009)
The Top 5 Most Exciting Games in Arizona Cardinals history:
1. Super Bowl 43 (23-27 L to Steelers)---the Cardinals’ lone Super Bowl berth---the Super Bowl excitement is one of kind, win or lose.
2. The 2008 NFC Championship (32-25 W over the Eagles at home).
3. The Cardinals’ 2009 51-45 (OT) playoff W over the Packers at home.
4. The Cardinals’ 2015 28-22 (OT) playoff W over the Packers.
5. The Cardinals’ 2008 33-13 playoff W over the Panthers in Carolina.
* Would you agree with this? if not, how would you rank them?
* Do you believe that Ken Whisenhunt and/or Bruce Arians deserve to be inducted into the Cardinals’ Ring of Honor?
My opinion is: the Cardinals should not induct one without the other.