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Arians introduced as Cardinals coach

The SportsXchange

Bruce Arians, who led the Indianapolis Colts to a 9-3 record while filling in as interim head coach, was introduced as the Arizona Cardinals coach on Friday.

Arians, 60, filled in for Colts coach Chuck Pagano, who spent most of the season undergoing treatment for leukemia. The Colts finished 11-5 in the regular season.

"I think players respect honest and discipline, and we're going to work hard," Arians told reporters Friday at his introductory press conference. "They're going to be accountable, not to me, to each other. It's not my football team. Our players will decide how good they are. It's their football team. If they want to win, we'll win. I'll show them the way. I'm no magic man. I've never tried to be.

He added that his team would be "smart, disciplined, fast and physical -- accountable, no excuses."

He was named Coach of the Year and Assistant Coach of the Year by Pro Football Weekly and the Pro Football Writers of America.

The Colts' nine-win improvement from 2011 (2-14) tied for the third-largest single-season turnaround in NFL history.

"What he did in my absence was truly remarkable. I am forever in debt to Bruce," Pagano said. "He is and always will be a great friend and I wish him nothing but the best as he begins this new chapter in his life."

Arians also interviewed for the Chicago Bears opening that was given to Marc Trestman.

The Cardinals were looking for an offensive-minded coach and Arians fits the bill. He tutored Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and Colts rookie Andrew Luck. Luck threw for the most passing yards (4,374 yards) by a rookie in NFL history.

"I'm a straight shooter," Arians said. "I don't come home with any bullets left in the gun. I think players respect honest and discipline, and we're going to work hard."

Arians had been a head coach in college, leading Temple from 1983-88.

Arians said he would call offensive plays if he was hired. As for defense, Arians said earlier it was too early to make that call.

Arians said he wants a coaching staff put together by Sunday.

His offense, he said, will be as aggressive as he is. He believes that teams can turn their fortunes around in a hurry.

Cardinals president Michael Bidwill said he interviewed about 10 candidates before deciding on Arians.

"He does have a different vibe," Bidwill said. "... I had heard so many great things about him. The million-dollar question here is can a guy go from coordinator to head coach. I think he answered it in Indianapolis. Then I got a chance to visit with him and get to know him. There was just no question that he's going to be a great head coach and I'm looking forward to working with him."

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