Cardinals hire Panthers DC Steve Wilks as head coach


The Arizona Cardinals have hired Carolina Panthers defensive coordinator Steve Wilks as their new head coach.

Wilks replaces the newly retired Bruce Arians, who called it a career on January 1 following the Cardinals' season finale.

He had a second interview with the Cardinals on Friday. New England Patriots linebackers coach Brian Flores and Philadelphia Eagles quarterbacks coach John DeFilippo were the other finalists for the job.

The 48-year-old just wrapped up his first season as a defensive coordinator, but has spent 11 seasons in the NFL as an assistant coach. He was previously with the Chicago Bears and San Diego Chargers before joining the Panthers.

Prior to his time in the NFL Wilks was an assistant coach for 11 years at the collegiate level, including stints at Notre Dame and Washington.

This is the second consecutive year Panthers coach Ron Rivera has seen his defensive coordinator leave for a head coaching job. Sean McDermott led the Bills to a 9-7 record and playoff berth in his first season in Buffalo.

Cardinals cornerback Patrick Peterson was seemingly impressed by reports of Wilks' appointment, writing "I LOVE IT" on his Twitter page.

Arizona went 8-8 in Arians' final season in charge, missing the playoffs for the second consecutive season, and will head into the offseason with no quarterback under contract.