Bruce Charles Arians (born October 3, 1952) is an American football coach for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers of the National Football League (NFL) and a former player. He was the head coach of the Arizona Cardinals from 2013 to 2017, and also served as offensive coordinator for the Cleveland Browns, Pittsburgh Steelers and Indianapolis Colts. He also coached at the college level, serving as head coach at Temple and as an assistant at Mississippi State and Alabama. Arians is known for his trademark slogan "No risk-it, no biscuit", which encourages aggressive play and risk-taking.
Arians was the offensive coordinator of the Steelers from 2007 to 2011 after being promoted from wide receivers coach, a position that he had held with the team since the 2004 season. With the Colts, he also served as interim head coach for the during the 2012 season, when their rookie head coach Chuck Pagano was diagnosed with leukemia. Arians guided the Colts to a 9–3 record over his tenure, which lasted from October 1 until Pagano's return on December 24; he was named AP NFL Coach of the Year for the season. He became the head coach of the Cardinals in 2013 following a lone season in Indianapolis. Following the 2014 season, in which Arizona posted an 11–5 record, Arians was named 2014's AP Head Coach of the Year, the second of his career.
Arians in 2016
|Tampa Bay Buccaneers|
|Born:||October 3, 1952|
Paterson, New Jersey
|High school:||William Penn (York, Pennsylvania)|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Head coaching record|
|Regular season:||NCAA: 21–39 (.350)|
NFL: 58–33–1 (.636)
|Career:||NCAA: 21–39 (.350)|
NFL: 59–35–1 (.626)
|Coaching stats at PFR|
A native of Paterson, New Jersey, Arians graduated from William Penn High School in York, Pennsylvania. Earlier, he attended York Catholic High School, where he was a standout scholastic quarterback.
Arians attended and played college football at Virginia Tech. As a senior in 1974, Arians was the starting quarterback in a wishbone offense for the Hokies football team. That season, he completed 53 of 118 passing attempts (44.9% completion pct.) for 952 yards with three passing touchdowns and seven interceptions. He rushed for 243 yards and eight touchdowns. Arians held the Virginia Tech school record for most QB rushing touchdowns in a season with 11, two more than Michael Vick. The record has since been broken by Jerod Evans in 2016. He was also the first white player to share a dorm room with a black player in VT history. His roommate was James Barber, father of Ronde and Tiki Barber.
Arians began his coaching career in 1975 as a graduate assistant at Virginia Tech. He was forced to resign after the death of 19 year old Bob Vorhies, who suffered a heat stroke while doing punishment drills. Arians then held an assistant coaching position at Mississippi State University (running backs and wide receivers) from 1978–80 before heading to the University of Alabama to coach the running backs from 1981–82 under Paul "Bear" Bryant.
Arians was also the head coach at Temple University from 1983–88. While head coach for the Temple Owls, he compiled a 27-39 overall record over six seasons. All six of Temple's wins during the 1986 season were later forfeited; running back Paul Palmer, who was the runner-up in the Heisman Trophy voting in 1986, had signed with a sports agent before the season, making Palmer ineligible. Besides Palmer, other standout players Arians coached at Temple included cornerback Kevin Ross, safety Todd Bowles, offensive guard John Rienstra, and running back Todd McNair. Ross, Bowles, and McNair would all later serve as NFL assistant coaches with or under Arians.
After coaching at Temple, Arians held positions with Mississippi State (offensive coordinator, 1993–95) and Alabama (offensive coordinator, 1997) in between NFL assistant coaching jobs.
At the end of the college football season in 1988, Arians was hired in the NFL as a running backs coach for the Kansas City Chiefs. It was during this time with the Chiefs that he worked with the coach who brought him to the Pittsburgh Steelers, Bill Cowher. He also spent one season as the tight ends coach of the New Orleans Saints in 1996.
Following this stint was when he made a name for himself when he got the job as the quarterbacks coach of the Indianapolis Colts in 1998. He was the first quarterback coach of Peyton Manning when he arrived in the NFL. Afterward, he was hired as offensive coordinator (2001–2003) for the Cleveland Browns under Butch Davis. In 2002, he helped the Browns finish 9–7 (2nd in the newly aligned AFC North) and to a wild card playoff berth where they lost to the Steelers (36–33) in the first round. It was during his tenure with the Browns that he first worked with Chuck Pagano who served as the Browns secondary coach from 2001 to 2004.
After the 2003 season, he was hired as the Steelers wide receivers coach and in 2007 was promoted to offensive coordinator of the Steelers, a position he held until his contract expired after the 2011 season.
On January 28, 2012, Arians agreed to become the offensive coordinator of the Indianapolis Colts, replacing Clyde Christensen. On October 1, 2012, Arians was named the interim head coach of the Colts following coach Chuck Pagano's leukemia diagnosis. Arians led the Colts to a 9–3 record, part of one of the biggest one-season turnarounds in NFL history. The nine wins are the most by an interim head coach in NFL history. After winning only two games in 2011, the Colts returned to the playoffs. Pagano returned to the Colts as head coach on December 24, 2012, with Arians returning to his role as offensive coordinator. Arians missed the Colts wild-card game loss against the Baltimore Ravens due to being hospitalized with an illness, which was described by doctors as an inner ear infection or a virus; Arians had missed practice on January 3 due to the flu. Arians was named the 2012 AP Coach of the Year, making him the first interim head coach to win the award.
On January 17, 2013, the Arizona Cardinals and Arians agreed on a 4-year deal that would make Arians their head coach. Arians is the first Cardinals coach since Norm Barry back in 1925 to record at least nine wins in his first season, with a record of 10-6 for 2013.
The Cardinals finished the 2014 season with an 11–5 record and were the #5 seed in the NFC. The 11 wins tied a Cardinals franchise record for most wins in a season. Arians led the Cardinals to a 9–1 start, best in the NFL, but injuries to starting quarterback Carson Palmer (who was 6–0 as the starter) and backup Drew Stanton, (who was 5–3 as starter) led to the Seattle Seahawks claiming the divisional title with a 12–4 record. The injury plagued Cardinals were eliminated by the Carolina Panthers in the first round of the NFL 2015 playoffs, 27–16. Following the season, Arians was named AP Head Coach of the Year for the second time in three seasons.
On February 23, 2015, the Cardinals announced a new four-year deal with Arians which will keep him with the Cardinals through the 2018 season. After starting 3–0 for a second consecutive season, in 2015, Arians led the Cardinals to a franchise record in season wins, ending the season with a 13–3 record. The Cardinals defeated the Green Bay Packers in the Divisional Playoffs, Arians' first playoff win as a head coach. The next Sunday, in the NFC Championship, the Cardinals were defeated again by the Carolina Panthers, this time in a 49–15 blowout.
Head coaches under whom Arians has served:
Assistant coaches under Arians who have become NFL head coaches:
He replaced Steve Tasker as a co-analyst.
Bruce and his wife Christine run a charity called The Arians Family Foundation, which supports and develops programs to prevent and ameliorate the abuse and neglect of children. The Arians Family Foundation supports the Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) program.
Arians is a prostate cancer survivor. He and his wife Christine have a son, Jake (born January 26, 1978), who spent part of the 2001 season as the placekicker for the Buffalo Bills, and a daughter, Kristi Anne (born December 15, 1980).
|Temple Owls (NCAA Division I-A independent) (1983–1988)|
* 1986 team was 6–5 on the field, but had to vacate their wins due to the presence of an ineligible player on their roster.
|Won||Lost||Ties||Win %||Finish||Won||Lost||Win %||Result|
|IND*||2012||9||3||0||.750||2nd in AFC South||–||–||–||–|
|ARI||2013||10||6||0||.625||3rd in NFC West||–||–||–||–|
|ARI||2014||11||5||0||.688||2nd in NFC West||0||1||.000||Lost to Carolina Panthers in NFC Wild Card Game|
|ARI||2015||13||3||0||.813||1st in NFC West||1||1||.500||Lost to Carolina Panthers in NFC Championship Game|
|ARI||2016||7||8||1||.469||2nd in NFC West||–||–||–||–|
|ARI||2017||8||8||0||.500||3rd in NFC West||–||–||–||–|
The 2013 Arizona Cardinals season was the franchise's 94th season in the National Football League, the 26th in Arizona and the first under head coach Bruce Arians. The team finished with a 10–6 record, which was the second time in 37 years that the team finished with at least 10 wins. The Cardinals doubled their win total from 2012, and were in playoff contention heading into the Week 17 regular season finale, but missed the playoffs for a fourth consecutive season.2014 Arizona Cardinals season
The 2014 Arizona Cardinals season was the franchise's 95th season in the National Football League, the 27th in Arizona and the second under head coach Bruce Arians. Following an explosive 9–1 start to the regular season, they finished at a disappointing 11–5, achieving their highest win total since 1975 when they were still in St. Louis (also their highest total in a 16-game season). The Cardinals clinched their first playoff berth since 2009, and had a chance to become the first team to try to play the Super Bowl on their own home field, University of Phoenix Stadium. However, after season-ending injuries to Carson Palmer and Drew Stanton, they were forced to start third-string quarterback Ryan Lindley in the wild-card round, losing to the 7–8–1 Carolina Panthers by a score of 27–16. The 2014 Cardinals were the sixth team during the Super Bowl-era to qualify for the playoffs in a season in which their stadium hosted the Super Bowl and the first since the 2000 Tampa Bay Buccaneers. They were also the first team since the NFL re-alignment in 2002 to do so. They were followed by the 2016 Houston Texans.2015 Arizona Cardinals season
The 2015 Arizona Cardinals season was the franchise's 117th season, 96th season in the National Football League and the 28th in Arizona. It was also the team's 10th season playing their home games at University of Phoenix Stadium and the third under head coach Bruce Arians. The Cardinals clinched their first NFC West title since 2009, in addition to the first 13-win season in franchise history. They also clinched a first round bye for the first time in franchise history.
The second-seeded Cardinals began their playoff run by defeating the fifth-seeded Green Bay Packers 26–20 in overtime in the divisional round, giving quarterback Carson Palmer his first career playoff win. However, they were blown out by the top-seeded Carolina Panthers in the NFC championship by a score of 49–15, with the Cardinals committing seven turnovers, tied for the most turnovers in a conference championship game since the Los Angeles Rams were defeated by the Cowboys abruptly in the 1978 season by a score of 28–0. The 2015–16 NFC Championship Game was a rematch of the 2008–09 NFC Divisional Round, which saw the 9–7 Cardinals upset the Panthers in their home stadium. The Panthers themselves would go on to have an embarrassing loss in Super Bowl 50 against the Denver Broncos, losing 10–24. As of the 2018 NFL season, this remains the last time the Cardinals had a winning record and made it to the playoffs.2016 Arizona Cardinals season
The 2016 Arizona Cardinals season was the franchise's 118th season, 97th season in the National Football League, 29th in Arizona, and 11th at University of Phoenix Stadium. It was also the fourth season under head coach Bruce Arians.
In free agency, they signed veteran defensive back Tyvon Branch and veteran lineman Evan Mathis, while re-signing several key players. They traded for Chandler Jones from the New England Patriots, sending Jonathan Cooper and a late second-round pick to New England.
The Cardinals came into the 2016 season with expectations of improving on their 2015 campaign and reaching the Super Bowl. However, after a 1–3 start, they suffered injuries to quarterback Carson Palmer and most of the offensive line. On October 23, the Cardinals and the Seattle Seahawks played out a 6–6 tie; this was the Cardinals' first tie since 1986 when they were the St. Louis Cardinals. It was also the lowest-scoring NFL tie since overtime was introduced in 1974. The Cardinals were eliminated from playoff contention in Week 15 after a loss to the New Orleans Saints. Despite winning their final two games, the Cardinals ended the season with a losing record at 7–8–1. Because the Chicago Cubs won the 2016 World Series, their first title in 108 years, the Cardinals also finished the season with the longest active championship drought in the four major American professional sports, with their last championship in 1947 as the Chicago Cardinals.2017 Arizona Cardinals season
The 2017 season was the Arizona Cardinals' 98th in the National Football League, their 30th in Arizona and 12th at University of Phoenix Stadium. It was also the fifth and final season under head coach Bruce Arians. The Cardinals played one road game in London at Twickenham Stadium against the Los Angeles Rams as one of the NFL London Games. They improved on a 7–8–1 season they had in 2016, finishing 8–8. However, they missed the playoffs for the second straight season.2018 Arizona Cardinals season
The 2018 season was the Arizona Cardinals' 99th in the National Football League, their 31st in Arizona, and their first and only under head coach Steve Wilks. During the off-season, State Farm purchased naming rights to the Cardinals home stadium and it was renamed from University of Phoenix Stadium to State Farm Stadium. Although former head coach Bruce Arians retired before the season began, he came out of retirement on January 8, 2019 to become the new coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
With a 45–10 loss to the Los Angeles Chargers, the Cardinals fell to 2–9 and suffered their first losing season since 2016. With a Week 14 loss to the Detroit Lions, the Cardinals had their first double digit loss season since 2012 and were eliminated from playoff contention for the third consecutive season. One highlight of the Cardinals' 2018 season was their first ever victory against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field since the AFL-NFL Merger in 1970, which also resulted in the firing of Packers head coach Mike McCarthy, after 12 years of coaching them. The last time the Cardinals beat the Packers on the road dates back to 1947, when they were based in Chicago and the same year they last won a championship. They finished the season 3–13, their worst record since 2000 and the worst record in the league. The Cardinals also went 1–7 at home. The Cardinals fired Steve Wilks the day after the season ended.
With the Cardinals holding the league's worst record, they will earn the first overall pick in the 2019 Draft.2019 Tampa Bay Buccaneers season
The 2019 Tampa Bay Buccaneers season will be the franchise's 44th season in the National Football League, the 22nd playing their home games at Raymond James Stadium and their first under former Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians. They will try to make the playoffs for the first time in 12 years.Active NFL head coach career Super Bowl history
There are 32 head coaches in the National Football League (NFL) for the 32 respective teams. Nineteen of the current head coaches have won at least one Super Bowl as either a head coach, assistant coach, or as a player throughout their career in the NFL, while all but 3 have participated in at least one. Bill Belichick has the most Super Bowl wins throughout his career among active head coaches with 8 (6 as a head coach and 2 as a defensive coordinator), as well the most losses with 4 (3 as a head coach). Doug Marrone, Matt Nagy and Kliff Kingsbury are the only coaches who have never won or lost a Super Bowl having never made it to one. Six of the coaches have won at least one Super Bowl as a head coach with their current teams, John Harbaugh, Bill Belichick, Sean Payton, Pete Carroll, Doug Pederson and Mike Tomlin. Additionally, Jon Gruden won Super Bowl XXXVII while the head coach for the 2002 Tampa Bay Buccaneers.Clyde Christensen
Clyde Christensen (born January 28, 1956) is an American football coach who is the quarterbacks coach for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers of the National Football League (NFL). Christensen most recently held the position of Director of Football/Player Development and offensive coordinator for the Miami Dolphins of the National Football League (NFL). When Dowell Loggains was hired to replace him following the 2017 season, it was announced Christensen would remain with the team in a different role. He was previously the quarterbacks coach for the Indianapolis Colts. Christensen is expected to join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as quarterbacks coach with new coach Bruce Arians.Jake Arians
Jacob Bruce Arians (born January 26, 1978) is a former American football placekicker in the National Football League. He played college football at UAB.
Arians spent less than one season as the field goal kicker for the Buffalo Bills in 2001, signing with the team as an undrafted free agent that summer to replace longtime kicker Steve Christie, who was among the numerous players who joined the San Diego Chargers in the "Bills West" exodus. He did not handle kickoffs, which were handled by punter Brian Moorman. Arians beat out Jay Taylor for the open position. Due to several missed field goals and a missed extra point, Arians was released near the end of the 2001 season and was replaced by Shayne Graham, after which he never returned to professional football.
He is the son of current Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach and former Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians. Bruce was the Cleveland Browns offensive coordinator during his one season in Buffalo, but the teams did not play each other that season.Keith Armstrong (American football)
Keith Armstrong (born December 15, 1963) is an American football coach in the National Football League (NFL). He currently serves as the special teams coordinator of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Armstrong has over two decades of professional coaching experience. He played college football at Temple.
On December 31, 2012, NFL.com reported that Armstrong was expected to be interviewed by the Chicago Bears for the head coaching position after Lovie Smith's firing. He also met with the Philadelphia Eagles about possibly replacing Andy Reid. In the 2016 season, Armstrong and the Falcons reached Super Bowl LI, where they faced the New England Patriots. In the Super Bowl, the Falcons fell in a 34–28 overtime defeat.On January 9, 2019, Armstrong agreed to become special teams coordinator of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, rejoining the staff of Bruce Arians who was the head coach of the Temple Owls when Armstrong began his coaching career.List of Arizona Cardinals head coaches
The Arizona Cardinals are a professional American football team based in Glendale, Arizona. They are a member of the Western Division of the National Football Conference (NFC) in the National Football League (NFL). The team began as the Morgan Athletic Club in 1898 in Chicago, Illinois. The team's second name was the Racine Normals, since it played at Normal Field on Racine Street. In 1901, they were renamed to the Racine Street Cardinals, a name that came from the University of Chicago jerseys that the team used, which were described as "Cardinal red". The team was established in Chicago in 1898 and was a charter member of the NFL in 1920. The team has played their home games at the University of Phoenix Stadium since 2006 and is the oldest franchise in the NFL.The team has moved to numerous cities during its history. After staying in Chicago from 1920 to 1959, it moved to St. Louis, Missouri and remained there from 1960 to 1987. It played in Tempe, Arizona, from 1988 to 2005, before eventually settling in Glendale, Arizona in 2006, where it now resides. Since 1920, two Cardinals coaches have won the NFL Championship: Norman Barry in 1925 and Jimmy Conzelman in 1947. Five other coaches—Don Coryell, Jim Hanifan, Vince Tobin, Ken Whisenhunt and Bruce Arians—have led the Cardinals to the playoffs, and in 2009 they went to the Super Bowl.There have been 40 head coaches for the Cardinals franchise since it became a professional team in 1920; fourteen of the team's coaches are former Cardinals players. Ernie Nevers and Jimmy Conzelman are the only coaches to have had more than one tenure with the team. Pop Ivy and Gene Stallings both coached the team during its move from one city to another. Cardinals coach Roy Andrews is tied for the lowest winning percentage among the team's coaches (.000), having lost the only game he coached, in 1931. Co-coach Walt Kiesling lost all 10 games he coached in 1943, when the team merged with the Steelers during World War II and was known as Card-Pitt. Co-coaches Ray Willsey, Ray Prochaska, and Chuck Drulis have the highest winning percentage among Cardinals coaches (1.000). The team's all-time leader in games coached is Ken Whisenhunt, who was hired on January 14, 2007, with 96. Whisenhunt was fired on December 31, 2012, after the Cardinals recorded a 5–11 record in 2012.The all-time leader in wins is Arians with 50, including one playoff victory. The all-time leader in wins is Bruce Arians with 50, including one playoff victory.List of Indianapolis Colts head coaches
The Indianapolis Colts are a professional American football team based in Indianapolis, Indiana. They are a member of the South Division of the American Football Conference (AFC) in the National Football League (NFL). In 1953, a Baltimore-based group led by Carroll Rosenbloom won the rights to a new Baltimore franchise. Rosenbloom was granted an NFL team, and was awarded the holdings of the defunct Dallas Texans organization. The team was known as the Baltimore Colts for 31 seasons before moving to Indianapolis in March 1984.There have been 19 head coaches for the Colts franchise. Keith Molesworth became the first coach of the Baltimore Colts in 1953, but he was reassigned to a different position with the team following the season. In terms of tenure, Weeb Ewbank has led the team for more games (112) and more complete seasons (nine) than any other head coach. He led the team to two of their NFL championships. Three Colts head coaches; Ewbank, Don Shula (3), and Ted Marchibroda, have been named coach of the year by at least one major news organization. Ewbank and Shula are members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, having been inducted in 1978 and 1997 respectively.Six times in Colts history there were interim head coaches. In 1972, Don McCafferty was fired five games into the season. John Sandusky was named as the interim head coach for the rest of the season, during which he led the Colts to a 4–5 record, but he was not made the permanent coach the next year. In 1974, head coach Howard Schnellenberger started off the season 0–3 and was fired. Joe Thomas assumed the duties of head coach and finished the season at 2–12. In 1991, the Colts started off 0–5 and Ron Meyer was fired as head coach. Rick Venturi was named as the interim for the final 11 games. In 2005 Tony Dungy was forced to miss one game due to personal issues. Jim Caldwell was named as the one game interim. In 2012 offensive coordinator Bruce Arians was named as the interim head coach indefinitely after Chuck Pagano was diagnosed with leukemia four weeks into the 2012 NFL season. Arians led the Colts to a 9–3 record – the record being credited to Pagano – and made the playoffs.List of Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coaches
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are a professional American football team based in Tampa, Florida. They are members of the Southern Division of the National Football Conference (NFC) in the National Football League (NFL). The franchise was founded as an NFL team in 1976 by Hugh Culverhouse. They lost their first 26 games and had one playoff win in its first 21 seasons before winning the Super Bowl in 2002.There have been ten head coaches for the Buccaneers franchise. The team has played 628 games in 40 seasons since joining the NFL. Three Buccaneers coaches, John McKay, Tony Dungy, and Jon Gruden, have taken the Buccaneers to the playoffs, while only Gruden has won the Super Bowl with the team, at Super Bowl XXXVII. The team's all-time leader in games coached is McKay (133) and the leader in wins is Gruden (57); Dungy leads all Buccaneers coaches in winning percentage (.563). Leeman Bennett has the lowest winning percentage (.125) of all Buccaneers coaches.List of Temple Owls football seasons
This is a list of seasons completed by the Temple Owls football team of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS).List of Virginia Tech Hokies starting quarterbacks
This is a list of American football quarterbacks who have started for the Virginia Tech Hokies football team and the years they participated on the Virginia Tech Hokies football team.
Six Virginia Tech quarterbacks have been taken in the National Football League draft since 1936. Michael Vick was the first overall selection in the 2001 NFL Draft. Besides the NFL, Virginia Tech quarterbacks have also played professionally in the Arena Football League, Canadian Football League, XFL, Indoor Football League, Southern Indoor Football League, and Lone Star Football League.
Three former Virginia Tech quarterbacks went on to be head coaches in Division I-A or professional football. Bruce Arians is the current head coach of the Arizona Cardinals of the National Football League.National Football League Coach of the Year Award
The National Football League Coach of the Year Award is presented annually by various news and sports organizations to the National Football League (NFL) head coach who has done the most outstanding job of working with the talent he has at his disposal. Currently, the most widely recognized award is presented by the Associated Press (AP), although in the past several awards received press recognition. First presented in 1957, the AP award did not include American Football League (AFL) teams. The Sporting News has given a pro football coach of the year award since 1947 and in 1949 gave its award to a non-NFL coach, Paul Brown of the All-America Football Conference's Cleveland Browns. Other NFL Coach of the Year awards are presented by Pro Football Weekly/Pro Football Writers of America and the Maxwell Football Club. The United Press International (UPI) NFL Coach of the Year award was first presented in 1955. From 1960 to 1969, before the AFL–NFL merger, an award was also given to the most outstanding coach from the AFL. When the leagues merged in 1970, separate awards were given to the best coaches from the American Football Conference (AFC) and National Football Conference (NFC). The UPI discontinued the awards after 1996.Todd Bowles
Todd Robert Bowles (born November 18, 1963) is an American football coach who is the defensive coordinator of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers of the National Football League (NFL), as well as a former player. He played eight seasons in the NFL as a safety, mainly for the Washington Redskins, and started in Super Bowl XXII against the Denver Broncos. Bowles was the interim defensive coordinator for the Philadelphia Eagles in 2012, and then for the Arizona Cardinals in 2013 and 2014. He was the interim head coach for the Miami Dolphins for the final three games of the 2011 season with a 2-1 record after the firing of Tony Sparano, and served as the heach coach of the New York Jets from 2015-2018.Tyrann Mathieu
Tyrann Devine Mathieu (; born May 13, 1992) is an American football safety for the Kansas City Chiefs of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football for Louisiana State University (LSU). In college he developed a reputation for causing turnovers, setting a Southeastern Conference (SEC) record with 11 career forced fumbles and earning the nickname "Honey Badger". In his sophomore season, he was recognized as a consensus All-American, won the Chuck Bednarik Award as the best defensive player in college football, and was a finalist for the Heisman Trophy. Mathieu was dismissed from the LSU football program after that season due to a violation of team rules.
After spending a year out of football in 2012, he was drafted by the Arizona Cardinals in the third round of the 2013 NFL Draft, reuniting him in the defensive backfield with former college teammate Patrick Peterson. As a rookie he was named to the PFWA All-Rookie Team. In 2015, he was invited to the Pro Bowl and earned first-team All-Pro honors. He has also played for the Houston Texans.