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Cardinals closing in on Steve Wilks as next head coach

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The Cardinals have a lot of work in front of them, and the first step appears to be just about complete.

The Arizona Cardinals appear to be closing in on their replacement for head coach Bruce Arians. Beat writer Kent Somers is reporting the team is closing in on a deal with Carolina Panthers defensive coordinator Steve Wilks to become the head coach.

Over the weekend, there was a report the Cardinals were going to give New England Patriots linebackers coach Brian Flores a second interview, and Jim Caldwell might get a look as offensive coordinator. Instead, they appear set to go with Wilks, who just completed his first year as defensive coordinator. Prior to this season, Wilks was defensive backs coach for two seasons, and over the past three years he has been assistant head coach. Prior to this season as defensive coordinator, Wilks had coached secondaries most of his career.

Ian Rapoport and Mike Garafolo are also reporting this news, and that led to this anecdote from Rapoport. I’m not entirely sure what to make of it and what it means for the Cardinals.

The Cardinals have a lot of work in front of them following the retirements of Bruce Arians and Carson Palmer. They do not have a long-term answer at quarterback, and the defense dealt with a host of injuries. Of the four teams in the NFC West, it’s easiest to be pessimistic about the state of the Cardinals heading into 2018. Wilks is highly regarded around the NFL, but he has a lot of work in front of him.

It does sound like Patrick Peterson is on board.