The Arizona Cardinals went through a lot of adversity during the 2016 season. Some of which is just coming to light.
Cardinals coach Bruce Arians revealed Tuesday doctors diagnosed him with renal cell carcinoma, which is the most common type of kidney cancer, last December according to Pro Football Talk.
The details of his diagnose came to the surface in Arians new book. The coach wrote he decided to remain with the team until the end of the year and then had surgery to remove the cancer in February. Arians announced this week on the Cardinals’ website that he has recovered and will be healthy enough to coach again this fall.
“Now I feel great,” he wrote. “My energy has returned. I’m told I’m cancer-free again. I’m ready for at least one more season of NFL football—maybe more.”
Arians played at Virginia Tech from 1971-74. During his senior season, he started at quarterback in the Hokies’ wishbone offense. He threw for a modest 952 yards, 3 touchdowns and 7 interceptions, but Arians still holds the Virginia Tech record for most rushing touchdowns by a quarterback in a season at 11. Michael Vick, who will be inducted into the school’s sports Hall of Fame, is second with nine.
Arians then began his coaching career as a graduate assistant at Virginia Tech. He received his first head coaching opportunity at Temple in 1983 and joined the NFL as a running backs coach in 1989.
After another stint in college football, Arians became offensive coordinator of the Cleveland Browns in 2001, and then joined the Pittsburgh Steelers staff in 2004. He became interim head coach for the Indianapolis Colts when Chuck Pagano missed time because of leukemia in 2012. In his absence, Arians helped steer the Colts to the playoffs, which led him to the Cardinals head coaching position in 2013.
This was Arians’ third cancer diagnosis. He had prostate cancer in 2007 and cancerous cells removed from his nose in 2013.