ESPN’s Dominique Foxworth and Fox Sports 1’s Shannon Sharpe, are shocked the Arizona Cardinals hired 39-year-old former Texas Tech Kliff Kingsbury as their new coach.
“This is embarrassing,” said Foxworth, a former NFL cornerback. “They are just reacting to a fad.”
The “fad” is hiring young offensive-minded coaches to NFL head coaching positions.
The Los Angeles Rams did that in 2017 with Sean McVay (31), and the Chicago Bears did the same in 2018 with Matt Nagy (39), and Green Bay Packers just followed suit by hiring Matt LaFleur (39) this week.
“I remember when throwback jerseys were cool,” Foxworth said on ESPN. “I bought some throwback jerseys, but I didn’t make my entire wardrobe out of throwback jerseys. This is tantamount to that. This is a cool thing. People are doing it. Let’s do it.”
Kingsbury was the head coach at Texas Tech from 2013-18 and compiled a 35-40 record. He was fired by the Red Raiders after three straight losing seasons. He recently took USC’s offensive coordinator job, but was on the job only a few weeks before landing the Cardinals’ gig.
Sharpe, a Hall-of-Fame tight end, doesn’t think Kingsbury is qualified to be an NFL head coach right now.
“(This is a) terrible move,” Sharpe exclaimed on FS1. “I could see if he was fired by Texas Tech and some other college team comes along and hires him. I could see him getting fired by Texas Tech and one of these NFL teams comes along and say ‘that guy can really coach offense’ and hire him as a coordinator. How the hell do you get fired at Texas Tech as the head coach and become the head coach of the Arizona Cardinals?”
Foxworth thinks Cardinals owner Michael Bidwell should have hired a search firm to help him find a new coach to avoid “stupid moves like this.”
“The thing that is confusing to me is that we in the media react so negatively (to search firms),” Foxworth said. “I think the Falcons hired a search firm to find they head coach a few years ago. The Browns have in their past and many people made big jokes about how stupid it is for NFL teams to hire a search firm. This is why they need to, because they make stupid moves like this.”
Kingsbury had Kansas City Chiefs star QB Patrick Mahomes as his starting QB at Texas Tech in 2015-16, and Foxworth thinks this embellished his resume.
“He had Mahomes in college and that was his best offensive year as a coach with Mahomes, and it’s not like he made something out of nothing with Patrick Mahomes,” Foxworth said. “I don’t know if you guys have noticed, but Patrick Mahomes is pretty good.”
Sharpe thinks Kingsbury’s work at Texas Tech proves he’s good at calling offensive plays, but not being a head coach.
“The guy won 35 games in six years,” Sharpe said. “What his resume tells me about him is he’s a damn good play-caller, a great offensive mind, but he’s a terrible head coach.”