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On Super Sunday, Potential Cardinals Coach Candidate Emerges

Reports say Eagles defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon is target

The Cardinals reportedly will interview Eagles defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon for their head coaching job.
The Cardinals reportedly will interview Eagles defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon for their head coaching job.

On Super Bowl morning, the Cardinals reportedly will add someone new to their coaching search.

Multiple reports say the team will interview Philadelphia Eagles defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon -- NFL Network said it will happen Monday -- as a third active candidate for the job following the dismissal of Kliff Kingsbury. Gannon, 40, has been coaching in the NFL continuously since 2012 after spending time as a scout for four seasons.

The Cardinals held second interviews with Giants offensive coordinator Mike Kafka and Bengals defensive coordinator Lou Anarumo this past week. Cardinals owner Michael Bidwill said Friday the team was pausing the search over the weekend in deference to the Super Bowl but would restart Monday morning.

"We want to make the right decision, not the fastest decision," Bidwill said.

Gannon is coming off a Super Bowl loss, a heartbreaking 38-35 defeat to the Chiefs on Sunday. The Eagles led, 24-14, at halftime but were unable to slow Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City offense in the second half.

Mahomes completed 21-of-28 passes for only 182 yards but three touchdowns and no turnovers. A punt return set one Chiefs' touchdown up at the Philadelphia 5-yard line, and another Kansas City touchdown came on a fumble return.

"Those guys (on the defensive staff) are talking through everything," Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni said. "I've got a ton of trust in our defensive staff."

The Cardinals don't have any other teams to battle for their candidates at this point. The other team left without a head coach, the Indianapolis Colts, will reportedly hire Eagles offensive coordinator Shane Steichen this week.

Of note was a comment Gannon made to Philadelphia TV station Fox 29 after the Eagles won the NFC title game when he was asked if that could be the last time he would be coaching the Eagles in Philadelphia.

"No, Philly's keeping me," Gannon said. "Good, bad or indifferent, I'm staying here."

That may have changed.

"He brings a lot of youth, energy, intelligence and he's just a great character all around," former Cardinal-turned-Eagle edge rusher Haason Reddick said after the Super Bowl. "Getting to know Gannon this year, I told him I appreciate him, I love him because he lets his players be who they are at the end of the day and if decides to leave, whoever's getting him I think they have a great head coach and someone the players will really take to. So, we'll see what happens, hopefully he doesn't go but that's for my own selfish reasons I like Gannon. Whatever he decides, I support him he worked hard for it and it's all love."