Bruce Arians, Todd Bowles earn PFWA awards

GLENDALE, Ariz. – In two years, Bruce Arians has come in and revitalized the Arizona Cardinals organization, taking them to double digit wins in 2013 and 2014 and a playoff berth this season – the team’s first playoff appearance since 2009.

For what Arians was able to accomplish with everything that went on around him this season, he was named the 2014 NFL Coach of the Year, as chosen by the Professional Football Writers of America [PFWA].

Former Cardinals defensive coordinator Todd Bowles was named the 2014 NFL Assistant Coach of the Year.

Arians lost 21 different players to injuries this season for a total of 109 games lost, yet still guided the Cardinals to an 11-5 record and a Wild Card playoff game. Arians won despite not having a quarterback throw for 2,000 yards, a wide receiver have 900 yards receiving or a running back gain 700 yards.

It’s Arians second PFWA Coach of the Year award. He was selected as Coach and Assistant Coach of the Year in 2012 with the Indianapolis Colts. Arians led the Colts to the playoffs as an interim head coach while head coach Chuck Pagano fought through leukemia.

Arians is the first Cardinals head coach to win the PFWA Coach of the Year award since Don Coryell won the NFC honor in 1974 [the PFWA selected one coach from each conference from 1970-89].

Bowles lost a lot on defense in 2014, whether by free agency, injuries or suspension, but he still had his players execute to the highest degree. His group finished fifth in the NFL in points allowed per game [18.7], tied for second in first downs allowed per game [18.8] and third in red zone percentage [43.9]. Bowles’ defense lost 61 games due to injuries this season, but was still able to put up those kinds of numbers. On January 14, Bowles became the head coach of the New York Jets.

Bowles is the first Cardinals assistant to be named PFWA Assistant Coach of the Year. The award started in 1993.

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