Arizona Cardinals offensive line coach Sean Kugler has been fired after allegedly groping a woman while the team was preparing for its Monday Night Football game in Mexico City. Cardinals personnel received word of the incident from Mexican authorities on Monday, shortly before facing off against the San Francisco 49ers.

Though the Cardinals initially denied making any coaching changes on Tuesday, Head Coach Kliff Kingsbury later confirmed that the team had released Kugler on Monday morning. His termination is permanent. Details about the alleged incident itself are still unclear, but it reportedly occurred on Sunday, the day between the team’s arrival and the game.

“It’s challenging anytime you make a staff change in that type of manner and I’m just going to leave it at that,” Kingsbury said.

According to the Arizona Republic, assistant offensive line coach Brian Natkin and tight ends coach Steve Heiden are expected to fill in for Kugler and share his duties. Kugler joined the team as an offensive line coach in 2019 and has also served as the run game coordinator since 2021. Before Arizona, he also worked as an assistant coach for four different NFL teams between 2001 and 2018 and as the head coach of the University of Texas at El Paso college team from 2013 to 2017. He only had one winning season as head coach and was released for poor performance.


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In May, former Cardinals running backs coach James Saxon was released after being charged on two counts of domestic battery.

Arizona currently has a 4-7 record and is third in the NFC West division behind the 49ers and Seattle Seahawks. In Mexico City, the team lost in a 38-10 rout to the San Francisco 49ers in the NFL’s annual game in Mexico City, an effort the league reignited in 2016 in an effort to expand the reach of American football.

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