Arizona Cardinals fans currently find themselves bracing for a brutal season of football after the organization released their presumed starter for the upcoming season and traded for a QB that struggled last year.
It turns out, things aren’t any better for the organization off the field right now.
The team’s owner has been the subject of allegations including discriminatory practices and misconduct and now a new allegation against the franchise has arisen.
According to ESPN’s Tisha Thompson, former coach Steve Wilks testified that a Cardinals executive gave him a burner phone to communicate with GM Steve Keim while Keim was serving a suspension stemming from a DUI.
Former AZ Cardinals head coach Steve Wilks testified that a team exec gave him a burner phone to communicate with former GM Steve Keim under orders from Keim & team owner Michael Bidwill during Keim's suspension, according to a deposition obtained by ESPN. https://t.co/fzoGNIP8H1
— Tisha Thompson (@TishaESPN) August 30, 2023
“Wilks testified that Bidwill initially ordered Wilks and others to have “no communication” with Keim following his guilty plea and suspension.
But Wilks said former Cardinals vice president of football administration Mike Disner gave him a burner phone sometime between July 18 and July 20″ Thompson wrote. “Wilks said Disner told him that the two of them, along with Keim, McDonough and Matt Caracciolo, the team’s vice president of football operations and facilities, received burner phones. He said Disner showed him how his phone had been preloaded with “everybody’s initials” and phone numbers. Bidwill himself used a burner phone to communicate with Keim, who had multiple burner phones, according to Wilks.”
Wilks also said that the team communicated with Keim during his suspension to try and work out terms for a contract extension with David Johnson. They ended up giving him a 3-year extension a few weeks after Keim returned from his suspension.
Steve Wilks added that he did have one exchange with Keim during that time and it came when the GM texted him to ask how things were going in practice.
Unfortunately for the Cardinals, it looks like they are going to have to continue dealing with the missteps of their owner and past management while they are also struggling on the field because of those same people.
At least much of that past regime is gone now and the Arizona Cardinals should hopefully avoid these kinds of questionable decisions in the future.