Cardinals hire ex-Patriots scout Monti Ossenfort as GM; head coach decision looms

The Arizona Cardinals have hired Monti Ossenfort as their new general manager. The Cardinals announced the decision on Monday.

Ossenfort joins the Cardinals after three seasons as the director of player personnel for the Tennessee Titans. Prior to joining the Titans in 2020, Ossenfort served multiple roles in the scouting department for the New England Patriots from 2006-19 and a single season in 2003. The Patriots won four Super Bowls while Ossenfort was on staff.

Ossenfort has 21 years of experience working in NFL scouting and player personnel. He replaces Steve Keim, who resigned last week alongside the dismissal of head coach Kliff Kingsbury. Keim spent 10 seasons as Arizona's general manager. He oversaw the Kingsbury era that saw the Cardinals make a single playoff appearance in four seasons with Kyler Murray at quarterback.

This is a 2022 photo of Monti Ossenfort of the Tennessee Titans NFL football team. This image reflects the Tennessee Titans active roster as of Thursday, May 12, 2022 when this image was taken. (AP Photo)
Monti Ossenfort takes over a front office tasked with turning the Cardinals into a winner with Kyler Murray at quarterback. (AP Photo/Tennessee Titans)

The Cardinals regressed to 4-13 this season following a playoff appearance that ended with a blowout loss to the Los Angeles Rams in the wild-card round. They signed Murray to a $230 million contract extension last offseason.

"It was critically-important for us to find the right person to lead us as general manager and there is no doubt in my mind that we have that in Monti Ossenfort," Cardinals owner Michael Bidwill said in a statement.

The first major item on Ossenfort's agenda will be to hire a head coach. The Cardinals committed to Murray at quarterback and will look to change the culture in the locker room after the disappointment of the Kingsbury era.

According to multiple reports, the Cardinals have already interviewed San Francisco 49ers defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans for the position. They've also reportedly requested permission to interview former New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton and Pittsburgh Steelers defensive coordinator Brian Flores, who previously coached the Miami Dolphins. Cardinals defensive coordinator Vance Joseph is also reportedly a candidate for the job.