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Cardinals hire Bruce Arians as their next coach

By Ryan Wilson | CBSSports.com
Bruce Arians replaces Ken Whisenhunt as the Cardinals' coach. (Getty Images)

Bruce Arians has accepted the Cardinals' offer to be their next coach, CBSSports.com's Mike Freeman has confirmed.

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports that it's a four-year deal with an option for a fifth.

Arians succeeds Ken Whisenhunt, who was Arizona's coach from 2007-2012 and led the team to the Super Bowl after the 2008 season. But Whisenhunt never could find a quarterback to replace Kurt Warner, who retired after the 2009 season, and that ultimately cost him his job. Whisenhunt wasn't out of work long; he was hired as the Chargers' offensive coordinator earlier this week.

On Thursday, after meeting with the Cardinals but before he was offered the job, Arians spoke to the media.

“I have a pretty good job sitting back in Indianapolis,” he said via AZCentral.com. “Do I want to be a head coach? Definitely. But just to be one? No. …

“I told my agent early, when he was setting up interviews, ‘I'm going to have to have a heck of a feeling about that organization, owner, general manager, team, to leave where I am right now.'"

And did Arians get that feeling about the Cardinals?

"Yes, I do," he responded.

Turns out, he wasn't kidding.

Now Arians' first order of business is to find a quarterback. He's had some success working with them (Peyton Manning in 1998, Ben Roethlisberger from 2007-2011, and Andrew Luck in 2012), but he'll have his work cut out for him in Arizona. He'll have to decide if Kevin Kolb, John Skelton, Ryan Lindley or Brian Hoyer are realistic options at the position, or if the Cardinals will have to go outside the organization to find their next legitimate franchise quarterback.

On the other side of the ball, CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora reports that Arians is exploring options for a new defensive coordinator, and, according to league sources, is high of Eagles coordinator Todd Bowles.

Incumbent defensive coordinator Ray Horton, who was considered for the Cards head coaching job, has let the organization know he would like to explore other options as well, sources told La Canfora. Bowles has several years left on his deal with the Eagles but with Chip Kelly hired as the new coach, several league sources expect the Eagles to move on from Bowles.

If Horton is let go from the Cardinals, league sources said the Browns would have significant interest.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, like us on Facebook, and subscribe to the Pick-6 Podcast on iTunes. You can follow Ryan Wilson on Twitter here: @ryanwilson_07.

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