As he did in 2007, head coach Ken Whisenhunt will resume his play calling duties after relinquishing them last year. Whisenhunt hopes to groom Miller to eventually take over in the future, much like he did with Haley. Given the success the Arizona offense experienced under Haley, now head coach of the Kansas City Chiefs, the method has certainly been proven to work. Regardless of who's calling the plays, Grimm and Miller have had an impact on the game plan and that trend will continue going forward.
With Grimm focusing solely on the running game, the Cardinals' rushing attack could be in store for a major resurgence. Arizona managed a league-worst 74 yards per game on the ground last year and averaged a mere 3.5 yards per carry. Grimm's task of improving the Cardinals' running game will go hand in hand with his continued efforts along the offensive line.
Veteran RB Edgerrin James' return to the desert is doubtful and one of Grimm's first items to address will be adding another capable runner through the draft or free agency. RB Tim Hightower showed extreme promise during his rookie season but is unlikely to carry a full-time load next year. RB J.J. Arrington finally proved his worth as a change of pace back after experiencing three disappointing seasons in Arizona.
If the Cardinals secure a free-agent running back, New York Giants RB Derrick Ward could be an option. With the Giants applying the franchise tag to RB Brandon Jacobs and already with backup RB Ahmad Bradshaw, Ward will soon be departing from New York. If Arizona is willing to utilize a first-day pick in the upcoming draft, Pittsburgh RB LeSean McCoy or Shonn Greene from Iowa are two possible targets.
Replacing Miller as wide receivers coach will be former Rutgers offensive coordinator John McNulty. McNulty spent five seasons with the Scarlet Knights and has previous ties to the NFL. He was an assistant coach for six years, including stints with the Dallas Cowboys and Jacksonville Jaguars. Matt Raich will take over as linebackers coach, leaving Arizona with only the offensive and defensive quality control positions to fill.
After losing both coordinators following a Super Bowl berth, Arizona had the luxury of filling the openings from within its current coaching staff. This allows the Cardinals' coaches to pick up right where they left off and continue to build on the foundation that has been set.
Questions or comments? Contact Brad Wilbricht at firstname.lastname@example.org