What will Miller bring to Cardinals' offense?

Mike Miller was promoted to offensive coordinator but can he rejuvenate a failing unit?

The Cardinals have a single offensive coordinator for the first time in two seasons, but it's questionable if the change will really mean anything.

Mike Miller, previously the passing game coordinator, was promoted to offensive coordinator, filling a position that has been vacant since Todd Haley left for the Chiefs after the 2008 season.

For the past two years, Miller, offensive line coach Russ Grimm and coach Ken Whisenhunt have shared coordinator duties.

Miller supervised the passing game. Grimm was the run game coordinator, and Whisenhunt called most of the plays.

Near the end of last season, Whisenhunt handed off some of the play-calling duties to Miller, although it hasn't been determined yet who will call plays in 2011.

"I think I've decided I'm going to call the good plays," Whisenhunt joked. "Since Mike's now the coordinator, he's going to be responsible for all the ones that don't work."

So much is up in the air with the Cardinals' offense that Whisenhunt doesn't want to make a commitment about play-calling.

The Cardinals are searching for a new quarterback. Three of the five starting offensive linemen - center Lyle Sendlein and guards Deuce Lutui and Alan Faneca - are due to be unrestricted free agents.

The Cardinals ranked near the bottom of every significant offensive category last year, and Whisenhunt could be trying to lessen the pressure on Miller to turn things around.

With a new quarterback, Whisenhunt might feel more comfortable calling plays in the first part of the season.

Miller's promotion completes a staff renovation for Whisenhunt. He made three changes on defense, firing coordinator Bill Davis, secondary coach Donnie Henderson and assistant secondary coach Rick Courtright.

New defensive coordinator Ray Horton had input in the two new hires in the secondary: defensive backs coach Louie Cioffi and assistant secondary coach Deshea Townsend, the former Steelers cornerback.

As expected, Whisenhunt is pleased with his revamped staff. But he also knows that the real test will come during the season.

"We can talk about it all we want right now," he said. "Ultimately, what it comes down to is we have to perform better on Sundays than we did last year. We set a standard around here. That's a good thing."

Whisenhunt fired Davis shortly after the season, and left the job open for a month because he wanted to interview Steelers' assistants Keith Butler and Horton.

Horton was given considerable input in the hires in the secondary, because Whisenhunt wanted him to feel comfortable with the assistants under him.

"It's been tough, saying goodbye to guys you have respect for, who worked hard for you," Whisenhunt said. "But that is the business. It's always difficult to go through a season like we did last year, for our fans, our players, everybody."

Miller doesn't see his duties changing much. As passing game coordinator, he came up with most of the practice schedule and a considerable amount of the game planning.

He will have some additional decision-making authority during the week, but will continue to rely heavily upon Whisenhunt and Grimm.

Whisenhunt spoke to Grimm about taking over as offensive coordinator, but Grimm, the assistant head coach, chose to stay in his current spot.

"Could Russ do it?" Whisenhunt said. "Absolutely. But coaching the offensive line is a full-time job."

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