Tension continues to build up regarding the contract dispute between the Arizona Cardinals and Kyler Murray this summer. It is unsure when the two will come to an agreement on a contract, as it seems Murray is doing his best to secure the best possible deal he can manage.
It is apparent that some in the Cardinals’ front office may not exactly see eye to eye on what role Murray plays in the future of the team. Although, this hasn’t stopped several individuals from speaking out positively on Murray’s behalf. Most recently it was Larry Fitzgerald, quite arguably the greatest of all time for the Cardinals franchise.
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Fitzgerald Believes The Cardinals’ Murray Is The Real Deal
Earlier this week, Fitzgerald joined NFL Total Access and spoke briefly about Murray and the Cardinals’ upcoming season. “Obviously, the schedules are tough early in the season, I know they’re going to be without Hop (DeAndre Hopkins), but I know Kyler has the ability and the fortitude to be able to lift this team-up,” Fitzgerald said when being asked about the 2022 campaign. Fitzgerald, who played his last two seasons with Murray’s leadership under center, can surely attest to the skill and leadership Murray brings to the table.
Fitzgerald understands what it is like to play with Murray, who has arguably gotten better since their last time playing together. In their time together between 2019 and 2020, Fitzgerald recorded 129 receptions for 1,213 yards and five touchdowns.
The Cardinals Will Need To Avoid Falling Apart In Hopkins Absence Again
According to Sharp Football Analysis, Arizona had the 9th toughest schedule in 2022. The first six weeks of the season where Hopkins is missing due to suspension will be crucial. In those weeks they will face four playoff teams from last year, including the Super Bowl champion, Los Angeles Rams.
“He’s immensely talented,” Fitzgerald said of Murray. “He’s a guy that everybody around the league has to prepare differently for. You bring in Marquise Brown, Zach Ertz is now coming into his second year, better acclimated with the system. James Conner is fully healthy going back into the year. I really like where they are positioned.”
It is well known that the Cardinals’ front office has done everything they could to keep talent around Murray, no matter the costs. Brown, Ertz, and Conner are no exception, and will certainly carry a heavy load while Hopkins is sidelined for the first six games of the year. Nevertheless, Arizona went 3-4 without Hopkins in the 2021 campaign that collapsed underneath the pressure. Hopkins’ absence ensures that Murray will have to perform better this season and get the ball to his playmaker’s hands as quickly and often as possible.
This is a prime opportunity for Murray to silence the doubters and feed into his pre-draft comparisons by outperforming his previous seasons. At the end of the day it all loops back around to the impending decision of Murray’s contract because without it he will not be able to confidently lead the team to the destiny that awaits them.
“There’s nobody in the game as talented as, as diverse an array of abilities in terms of his athleticism, his ability to throw the ball going left or right,” Fitzgerald described Murray’s dynamic playing style. With the backing of the legend that is Fitzgerald, Murray has bought himself support once again from his peers.
Eventually, the only thing that will matter is his production on the field, but Murray could surely use the positive publicity in his favor when it comes to his looming contract negotiations.