The Drive with Jody Oehler

The Drive with Jody Oehler

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Jonathan Gannon's Big Risk

Jonathan Gannon isn’t playing it safe during the first week he’s on a job he’s never had before.

He’s already taking a boom or bust risk and the press conference room floor hasn’t been vacuumed yet.

Gannon has made all of his first hires, many of them the most important hires on his staff, coaches with no experience in the NFL at the job he’s hiring them for and all under the age of 40.

There are more first timers on Jonathan Gannon’s coaching staff than a high school party during freshman year.

So what’s the risk of hiring these coaches? Its a big one.

These are huge hires for the Cardinals. Gannon's reputation as a defensive mind is under scrutiny after the Super Bowl. Kyler Murray's contract and legacy are at stake on offense. And the Cardinals offensive line may have four new starters in 2023 compared to Week 1 of the 2022 season. These are all hugely impactful coaching positions for the future of this team.

By hiring inexperienced coaches, Gannon is basically waiving the margin for error with a first year head coach.

Most coaches enjoy some protection from job security issues in their debut year because there’s always the promise of a coordinator change.

Gannon has skipped past the part where he hires an older coach and gone straight to his guys.

While all the coaches are young and have impressive trajectories, none of them have the success in the same job that breeds credibility.

Meaning, if the Cardinals start 1-5, its not the coordinator that will bear the brunt of the blame, it will be the head coach.

There’s also a huge upside to this play for the rookie head coach.

By hiring young, ambitious coaches Gannon is injecting new energy, new ideas and new blood into every vein of the Cardinals franchise.

After the Keim/Kingsbury era, a whole franchise blood transfusion was needed and that’s exactly what it is getting.

The ability to reset a culture, build a new one and create an environment where the chemistry on the staff leads the way for the chemistry in the locker room has all been accelerated with the most recent hires.

In addition to the benefits of new blood into the organization, Gannon is also doing exactly what he was hired to do: lead.

He’s not worried about what the media reaction would be to his hires. He’s not worried about what other teams and coaches may be saying. He’s not licking his finger and holding it up in the air to tell him which way the wind is blowing.

He’s hiring who he believes in to execute a vision he has created. That’s leadership. You can’t get buy-in on a new culture if you don’t believe in it with 100% conviction yourself.

Gannon has been ALL IN on his own vision for leading this team and it's hard not to follow.

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