Horton says he could have delivered Norv Turner to Cardinals

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While their head-coaching job was vacant, the Cardinals seemed to be looking for a reason not to promote defensive coordinator Ray Horton to the next level.  But they can’t say it’s because they weren’t comfortable with Horton’s proposed offensive coordinator.

Horton tells Burns and Gambo on Arizona Sports 620 in Phoenix that Norv Turner would have been in the cards for, um, the Cards.

“Unequivocally,” Horton said regarding whether he could have delivered Turner.  “All the way throughout the process.

“His wife, Nancy, wanted to come here,” Horton said.  “Everybody was aware, I talked to Norv.  His wife wanted to come here, they have a daughter in San Diego.  They wanted to be close to home.  They were excited about the possibility.  He had worked with [quarterback] Kevin Kolb at the Senior Bowl.”

Despite reports that Horton was livid as a result of the decision to hire Bruce Arians instead as the head coach, Horton said he respects the decision that was made, that he understands it, and that he wasn’t upset.

More broadly, Horton has no concerns about the fact that he wasn’t hired to be a head coach in the current cycle, explaining that he understands owners currently are looking for offensive-minded coaches.  He called speculation that the length of his hair kept him from getting the job “absurd” and “idiotic.”

As to Arians’ decision not to keep Horton as defensive coordinator, Horton likewise has no hard feelings.  “He just said, ‘Ray, if I get the Phoenix job, you’re not my guy,’ even though we were worked together in Pittsburgh, even though we’re friends,” Horton said.  “And I respected that.  And that’s all you want is honesty, so he doesn’t leave you hanging and try to blame somebody else and say, ‘Oh well, it came from up above my pay grade, that they don’t want you, they do want you, blah blah blah.’  Honesty, up front, be a man.  Everybody’s a man, and off you go.  And Bruce and I are friends right this second.”

It’s a great attitude, and it’s the right attitude.  Some will say that Horton is simply saying all the right things in order to get hired to be a head coach in the future.  To that we say, if that’s the case, he’s doing it well.

51 responses to “Horton says he could have delivered Norv Turner to Cardinals

  1. Horton is a class act and a great motivator, he’ll be a HC in this league soon enough. I think he just needs to find the right ownership that believes in his agressive attacking style of play and willing enough to give him the resources to build a championship caliber team.

  2. Easy for Horton to say those things now, but technically Norv was never presented with the actual situation, since Horton wasn’t hired by the Cards.

  3. Arians will run circles around Turner. Be thankful Cards fans that Bruce is your new HC. I have so much respect for Arians. Being a Hawks fan, it’s hard to root for the hire of a divisional foe……but, I think they made the right decision.

    Wow, is the West looking like the division to beat in the NFC all of a sudden? I think so.

  4. Saying all the right things is better than the alternative. He seems like a classy guy and he has a good resume. But I sure hope he doesn’t insist on switching the Browns’ defense back to a 3-4 after they’ve spent the last two years collection D-linemen suited to the 4-3. That’ll set us back another couple of years. Which, come to think of it, is a tradition for the Browns over the past decade.

  5. @ Coop16

    Clearly you haven’t seen what the Cards D has delivered in 1 1/2 years. They were responsible for the great 2nd half of 2011. Get your knowledge up!

  6. Yes cards fans, you lucked out, Airians is a far better minded coach, Norv Turner is a good coach, but his time was awhile ago, he had so much talent in the niners and so much in the chargers, his gameplans were lacking because his fundamental philosophy is to pass and pass and pass somore. You dont even have a starting QB, decent enough run game though and a pretty nice defense, you scare this niner fan more then the green birds.

  7. “His promise to deliver Norv probably cost him the gig”

    No way. If he was the top guy for the HC job, he would have been hired immediately. Obviously they didn’t want him, for whatever reason. Norv is obviously well regarded, as he’s never long without a job.

  8. Class act. All the way. Give it a few years when teams want defensive head coaches and he’ll be first in line. Hell Rex Ryan got a job because of it surely this guy can.

  9. Sadly I do feel that his appearance is working against him. It’s not something that would bother me in the least, but the “good ol’ boys” club that is NFL ownership tends to look at such things.

  10. You have to respect Arians for telling him, hey if u can find another job take it. I think the Browns showed little class by stringing Dick Jauron around. Maybe they should have told him what Arians told Horton. Now all the good jobs are filled and Dick is out in the cold.

  11. I think Arians was a good hire as an HC, and would’ve loved to have him in Chicago. But I would’ve retained Horton. He’s coached a good defense, the roster is built to fit his system, and Arians would then only have to worry about rebuilding one side of the ball this year. It would’ve made Arians job just a little easier. Hopefully, he chooses wisely for a replacement.

  12. i like bruce arians and all, but i dont think he will have success in AZ, hes one of them assistants that should stay an assistant, ie;norv turner, romeo cranell, todd haley ,josh mcdaniels etc etc

  13. Think about it: has anyone actually ever seen a Browns fan? Could this be the greatest sports hoax of all time? Could it be that football never came back to Cleveland in 1999; it was all an act. Someone needs to look into this.

  14. Whether he could have delivered Turner probably should have been left unsaid, since it makes Turner’s hire in Cleveland look like Norv’s second choice. Pretty awkward when Turner, Horton and Chud are sitting around having coffee. Horton running off at the mouth became a not uncommon event during his time as AZ DC. Not every owner would want a head coach that doesn’t always practice discretion with the press.

  15. People can take shots at the Cards for their bad close to their year but Horton had that defense playing top 10 and I know I wouldn’t want to see my Seahawks play that twice a year next year especially if they could move the chains and get a couple of points on offense. I don’t know if Ray Horton will be a great head coach but he is without doubt one great defensive coordinator.

  16. Why would anyone even want Norv at this point. The guy inherited a 14-2 team and only made them worse every season. I guess as an OC he will have less pressure on him but come on the guy can’t win anywhere he goes. The AFC west has been arguably one of the worst division the past 6 season, and this guy barely has won 50% of his games on what seems to be a good roster.

  17. Bottomline it’s a shame Horton was not hired in this cycle where 8 jobs were available. This Rooney rule is broken and is nothing more then a check the box process for black coaches.

    You can find a serviceable offensive coach throughout the league as well as retreads but give me a solid hard nose defensive coach to run the ship and build an identity behind. Horton make the cards tough and a Norv offense without the HC responsibility could put up points. Total shame……,,

  18. Please no more norv is a genius crap. He hasn’t done anything in quite a long time. He is now outclass by almost every OC in the league now. Poor cleveland. Hiring retreads for all their positions. They had a chance to go a different way but chose not too. Like what buffalo did. Hire the right people. Out of all the teams in the league who needed a new coach no doubt the Bills did it better than anyone.

  19. Talk about sour grapes!

    As a Cleveland fan, I can’t believe the Browns got the better end of this deal.

  20. It would be nice if Mr.Horton would worry more about the job he does have instead of worrying about the ones he didn’t get.

  21. Norv is a great OC and will bring some offense to that team. The defense maybe a year away from competing but Ray Horton will make Haden and that young D look good.
    I just really wished as an Eagles fan Chip would have hired Horton before the Browns did.

  22. All the reports out of Phoenix were that Horton was ‘furious’ about being passed over for Arians. Screaming and shouting was heard between Horton and the GM before Arians arrived in the building. Horton has the reputation of being a stubborn hothead, and he talked his way out of AZ with his attitude. This latest quote from him is disingenuous – it’s not quite how things happened.

  23. I believe you are going to see Arizona hired the wrong head coach. They should have hired Horton. No matter… Horton will be a coordinator this year, and a head coach next year somewhere

  24. Umm ghost, you do realize he got the Pittsburgh job after being released from Cleveland right? He wasn’t that great in Cleveland. He did do better in Pittsburgh, but teams were more worried about their defense than their offense. And he was released in Pittsburgh as well, which is how he ended up in Indy. So I am missing the successful part…

  25. tndiver–

    Arians got a Super Bowl ring as offensive coordinator for the Steelers, as well as many other playoff appearances. Replaced in PIT by Haley, followed by an 8-8 season for the Steelers. Arians work in Indy last year speaks for itself. Are you really suggesting that record is in no way successful?

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