CINCINNATI – Former Arizona Cardinals coach Bruce Arians has doubled down on his interest in coaching the Cleveland Browns.
The York High graduate has now told NFL.com he would keep Freddie Kitchens as his offensive coordinator if he were chosen for the job.
Arians first entertained the possibility of coming out of retirement to coach the Browns three weeks ago when he told the Canton Repository and GateHouse Media Ohio, “Cleveland is the only job I would consider.”
In an interview with NFL.com for a story published Sunday on the league’s website, Arians said, “I would listen to the Browns and only them.” He also said his wife would support his return to coaching.
Kitchens coached quarterbacks and running backs under Arians in Arizona. After Arians announced his retirement Jan. 1, Kitchens joined the Browns as a running backs coach/associate head coach. He was promoted to offensive coordinator after the organization fired coach Hue Jackson and offensive coordinator Todd Haley on Oct. 29.
Arians also told NFL.com he would consider keeping interim coach Gregg Williams as defensive coordinator. The Browns are 2-1 since Williams and Kitchens were promoted, including a 35-20 win over Cincinnati on Sunday.
Arians went 49-30-1 in five seasons as the coach of the Cardinals and made the playoffs twice, going 1-2 in the postseason.
He’s now an analyst for CBS, so he would be available to interview with the Browns before this season ends.
Browns general manager John Dorsey was asked Nov. 14 whether he’ll interview Arians.
“I have a lot of respect for Coach Arians,” Dorsey said. “Right now, we’re in the process of beginning to finalize our plan. When it comes the appropriate time, if he happens to be one of the people, you’ll find out.”
Arians is 66. Asked if he would want to hire a younger coach, Dorsey said, “I just want the best possible head coach to move this thing forward regardless of age.”