Sean Kugler Hired As Cardinals' Offensive Line Coach

FILE - In this Sept. 10, 2016, file photo, UTEP head coach Sean Kugler watches during the first half of a NCAA college football game against Texas in Austin. Kugler has resigned after a 0-5 start. He stepped down Sunday, Oct. 1, 2017,  a day after the Miners' 35-21 loss at Army.  (AP Photo/Eric Gay, File)
New Cardinals offensive line coach Sean Kugler was the head coach at UTEP in 2017, before spending 2018 coaching with the Denver Broncos.

The spotlight of the offseason will be on the Cardinals' offensive line, as General Manager Steve Keim attempts to make improvements in a unit that needs it.

Sunday, the Cardinals picked the people who will be coaching that group.

Veteran NFL coach Sean Kugler, who was the head coach at UTEP from 2013-17 but coaching NFL offensive lines for eight seasons before that and also coached the Broncos' offensive line in 2018, was named to the post. Former NFL tight end Brian Natkin, who worked on Kugler's staff at UTEP, will be the assistant offensive line coach.

The Cardinals also hired David Raih to coach wide receivers, after Raih coached receivers for the Packers last season. Raih had been with Green Bay since 2014, serving as an offensive assistant before being promoted to coach wideouts in 2018.

Steve Heiden, who was originally hired on Bruce Arians' staff and stayed for Steve Wilks' staff, will again be retained and will coach tight ends. Heiden has been the assistant offensive line coach and assistant tight ends coach during his previous six seasons in Arizona.

Kugler's first NFL job was as the Lions' tight ends coach from 2001-2003. He later spent two years coaching the Lions' offensive line, followed by offensive line stints at Boise State, the Buffalo Bills and the Pittsburgh Steelers before taking the UTEP job. He resigned in 2017 midseason from UTEP before joining Vance Joseph's staff in Denver this past season. He was reportedly a candidate for multiple teams with openings before choosing the Cardinals.

Last week, the Cardinals announced the additions of Joseph as defensive coordinator and linebackers coach Bill Davis to Kliff Kingsbury's staff, in addition to retaining special teams coordinator Jeff Rodgers.

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