Cardinals looking for a veteran coordinator to run a 3-4

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The Cardinals acknowledged a few things during yesterday’s press conference — specifically that new coach Kliff Kingsbury was going to need a lot of help, and their decision to switch to a 4-3 defense last year was a bad one.

So they’re going to fix both of those problems by finding someone to call the defense that fits the 3-4 personnel they have on hand (as opposed to letting a rookie head coach switch them to a 4-3 like they tried for a second with Steve Wilks).

“I don’t think there’s any doubt that a veteran coordinator would be ideal in this situation, and just based on our personnel, I think a 3-4 fit is what we’re looking for,” General Manager Steve Keim said, via Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic. “Certainly, with the edge rush that we have, to be able to play man-free on the back end. Again, it’s catering to your strengths. There’s no doubt in my mind that we have to find a defensive coordinator that can do that.”

While everyone’s tripping over themselves to find the next Sean McVay, one of the things the Rams got most right was pairing him with elder coordinator Wade Phillips. The formula also worked this year with the Bears (Matt Nagy and Vic Fangio), and since Kliff Kingsbury lacks NFL contacts, Keim will likely be steering this one.

“It’s a discussion that Steve and I have had,” Kingsbury said. “I’ve obviously leaned heavily on him for names and people that he knows in this league. We feel like we have some great candidates. But, it’ll be an attacking style. We want to be aggressive and get this defense back to where they’ve been, previous to last year.”

(“Attacking” and “Aggressive” are big winners in New Coach Bingo, as no coach has ever said they plan to have a patient, passive style.)

Pass-rusher Chandler Jones has already signaled his approval of the idea, but adding some ballast to Kingsbury’s staff will be as important as any particular alignment of players.