NFL Hot Seats: Cardinals’ Kliff Kingsbury takes top spot

Arizona is only a game out of first place in the NFC West before the calendar even turns to October, but the Cardinals certainly haven’t passed the eye test through three games.

If not for a miraculous Week 2 comeback in Las Vegas, the Cardinals and not the Raiders would be the only 0-3 team remaining in the NFL. And it hasn’t saved Kliff Kingsbury from intense scrutiny as the Cardinals have now lost nine of their past 14 games since starting last season 7-0, including a lopsided 34-11 loss in last season’s wild-card round.

Remember when quarterback Kyle Murray was an NFL MVP candidate 11 months ago? Neither do most Cardinals fans, with Murray currently averaging 5.6 yards per attempt to go with an 82.6 passer rating while playing without suspended wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins.

Kingsbury has taken over as the 3-1 favorite at SportsBetting.ag to be the first NFL head coach to be fired or resign this season. He has passed Matt Rhule, whose Carolina Panthers beat the New Orleans Saints on Sunday for their first victory of the season.

Rhule opened at 4-1 at the sportsbook on Tuesday before moving to 3 1/2-1 by the afternoon.

They are followed by a pair of embattled first-year head coaches in Las Vegas’ Josh McDaniels (4 1/2-1) and Denver’s Nathaniel Hackett (5-1), whose Broncos have been anything but impressive in managing a 2-1 start.

They could all be a convincing win away from some breathing room. Dallas’ Mike McCarthy, who had the shortest odds just two weeks ago, is now 33-1 following a pair of wins led by backup quarterback Cooper Rush.

Kliff Kingsbury, 3-1

Matt Rhule, 4-1

Josh McDaniels, 4 1/2-1

Nathaniel Hackett, 5-1

Frank Reich, 7 1/2-1

Ron Rivera, 10-1

Pete Carroll, 16-1

Mike Vrabel, 20-1

Mike Tomlin, 22-1

Kevin Stefanski, 25-1

Arthur Smith, 33-1

Dan Campbell, 33-1

Dennis Allen, 33-1

Lovie Smith, 33-1

Mike McCarthy, 33-1

Robert Saleh, 33-1

Kyle Shanahan, 40-1

Matt Eberflus, 50-1

Zac Taylor, 50-1

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