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Rams to interview Ray Horton

Arizona Cardinals Training Camp Getty Images

Another name has surfaced in the St. Louis Rams’ head coaching search: Ray Horton.

The Rams have received permission from the Cardinals to interview Horton, Arizona’s defensive coordinator, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports.

Arizona hired Horton away from Pittsburgh, where he was the secondary coach, last year. He was a hot candidate at the time; Dallas was also interested in his services.

Horton is the second coach to be identified as a candidate for the Rams job. Jeff Fisher is widely viewed as the favorite, unless he chooses to take the Dolphins job instead.

By interviewing Horton the Rams will satisfy the requirements of the Rooney Rule, which stipulate that each team with a head-coaching vacancy must interview at least one minority candidate.

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13 Responses to “Rams to interview Ray Horton”
  1. dldove77 says: Jan 6, 2012 9:46 AM

    Nice hair.

  2. chocolatebaconbutter says: Jan 6, 2012 9:56 AM

    Probably won’t get the job, but he certainly is deserving. Ray really turned around this AZ defense in the 2nd half. It was clearly the strong point of the team. Plus it’s clear that he had a great impact in helping develop all the young talent on that side of the ball. Patrick Peterson, Richard Marshall, Daryl Washington, and Calais Campbell to name a few, all young players that made tremendous strides. I hope he stays DC in Arizona for a long time to come, but clearly he’s destined for bigger things.

  3. rammerray says: Jan 6, 2012 10:09 AM

    RAMS fan here, this would be an interesting pick up.

  4. 700levelvet says: Jan 6, 2012 10:15 AM

    Hell, he’s the leagues newest version of Leslie Frazier…..The Rooney Rule desiginated interview……….

  5. polegojim says: Jan 6, 2012 10:33 AM

    @choco – you mean the Arizona Cardinal defense that’s 18th in the league and giving up 350 per game. THAT defense?

    OK…. so the D was the strength of the team…. that’s not saying much – it’s A-R-I-Z-O-N-A. He doesn’t know success, he’s not tasted success, nothing in his Arizona results should lead anyone to believe he’ll BRING success.

    Does the fact that Dallas…Dallas…Dallas??? was looking to hire him actually instill confidence? Cuz Jerry’s got SUCH a good record of identifying Coaching talent, right?

    Those types of hires are the #1 reason why teams CONTINUE to struggle.

  6. westcoastredbird says: Jan 6, 2012 10:44 AM

    The Cardinals second half surge was due primarily to the defense. Horton is the best DC Arizona has ever had. It seems like we go through a DC every two years. Make him an assistant head coach like Russ Grimm and pay him the money. If we don’t keep him Whiz may be looking for a job next year.

  7. nflfollower says: Jan 6, 2012 10:57 AM

    Rooney rule is unfortunately the first thing that came to my mind, right after “who is Ray Horton?”

    Sad thing is, he very well may be the best candidate, but as long as requirements like the Rooney rule exist, it will make others wonder if a guy like this really earned the interview. And that’s just not right.

  8. scchamil says: Jan 6, 2012 11:06 AM

    Ray Horton was a solid DB for the Bengals the last time they made the Super Bowl… a little depressing to think about actually.

  9. jcullen71 says: Jan 6, 2012 11:49 AM

    Ray Horton will be a head coach in the NFL, it is a matter of when not if. His defense is pretty complex and the lack of a full training camp and off-season workout program really hurt him. The second half of the season the Cards defense really started to gel and I would expect a top 10 defense next year. Listening to talk on the radio yesterday, he really came across as very polished and someone who really “gets it” when talking about players and putting them in a position to suceed.

  10. cliffordc05 says: Jan 6, 2012 12:03 PM

    Ray Horton hasn’t tasted success? The Pittsburgh secondary is testament to his coaching ability. This interview satisfies the Rooney rule but could end up being similar to the Tomlin interview a few years ago. All of the so called experts had Whisenhunt or Russ Grimm pegged as the next Steelers coach when Pittsburgh brought in a little known assistant coach from Minnesota for a quick chat before they selected one of the real candidates. So how did that work out?

  11. canjura says: Jan 6, 2012 12:22 PM

    He seems like a viable option to me, not just someone to meet the Rooney Rule. I think Kroenke is intend on keeping McD and this is a way to do so: hire a defensive coordinator, first time head coach.

  12. darksidecowboy says: Jan 6, 2012 1:33 PM

    Damn, just when the Cards find a real DC he might leave! Being a selfish Cards fan I hope the Rams don’t pick him and he makes the Cards defense a top 5 next season. Although if he does that it will probably be his last season, getting hired as a HC for some team.

  13. footballguru80 says: Jan 6, 2012 3:22 PM

    @Polegojim nice response genius, he specifically said Horton turned around the defense in the 2nd half of the season. In the last 9 games of the season, the defense gave up an average of a little over 16 points a game, and 327 yards a game: top 4 and 9 in the league respectively. Plus they were number 1 in 3rd down defense, and top 3 in red zone defense; not bad when you start with some of the worse OLBs (e.g. Joey Porter, Haggans) in the league.

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