NFL Insider Shares Insight on Potential Cardinals’ Kliff Kingsbury Extension

Getty Images Coach Kliff Kingsbury looks on against the Chicago Bears on December 5, 2021.

Arizona Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury was rocking the “1920” baseball hat in their win against the Chicago Bears, the year the Cardinals made their professional debut and originated as the Chicago Cardinals.

The Cardinals won 33-22 and gave Kingsbury his 10th win of the season. History was also made, as the Cardinals are the first team since 1968 to win their first seven road games by at least 10 points.

The team went 2-1 without stars Kyler Murray and DeAndre Hopkins and maintain the best record in the NFL at 10-2. Success for the team hasn’t been easy due to the adversity struck with injuries and COVID.

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There’s still fives games left and a potential playoff run in the future which Kingsbury has answered every call. The 42-year-old’s achievements in year three brings forth an interesting question. Will the Cardinals look to keep the head coach’s services in the near future?

Reporter Gives Details on Kingsbury’s Future

Unless a major downward spiral or indifference were to occur, the Cardinals will definitely try to keep Kingsbury for as long as possible.

On December 5, CBS Sports NFL insider Jason LaCanfora reported that, “league sources indicated a long-term extension is a significant offseason priority for the Cardinals, and the coach’s leverage has clearly never been higher.”

Here’s more from LaCanfora:

Kingsbury, 42, could make the case that he should be compensated among the more experienced coaches in the NFL, turning around a franchise that was 3-13 and had fired Steve Wilks after just one season as head coach before he arrived and developing a franchise quarterback in the process. Of course, it’s a good problem to have, with a coach and quarterback both exceeding expectations at this level. It’s hard for decision makers in the NFL to envision a scenario in which Kingsbury isn’t paid handsomely in 2022.

While Kingsbury deserves major credit, general manager Steve Keim pairing Kingsbury with Murray in 2019 was a match-made in heaven.

“It really goes to validate the the things Michael (Bidwill) and I saw in him when we made that hire, and he’s obviously earned it,” Keim said. “The guy has done a tremendous job. He and our organization have grown together. We’re really excited about the future when you look at the work he’s put in, the improvements he’s made, the improvements we’ve made with the roster.”

LaCanfora also mentioned that Murray is, “eligible for a massive contract extension this offseason.” Murray leads the league in big-time throw rate according to Pro Football Focus (9.0%) and has the best turnover-worthy play rate (1.0%) in the league.

Murray even led the NFL in total QBR against the Bears in Week 13 while coming back from injury in less-than-ideal weather conditions.

When Murray missed three games with an ankle injury, backup Colt McCoy stepped in and had two great games. Kingsbury’s game scripts in the two wins with McCoy were methodical, getting him wide open targets and even letting him run with his legs.

Cross Off Destination for Kingsbury

On November 28, NFL insider Adam Schefter reported that Kingsbury was a potential target for the Oklahoma Sooners.

Kingsbury coached Texas Tech prior to his Cardinals tenure.

Now, the speculation of going back to the college ranks in Oklahoma were put to rest. On December 5, Clemson announced defensive coordinator Brent Venables as the new head coach at Oklahoma.

Kingsbury has one year left on his contract including a fifth-year option. Murray wasn’t buying the speculation from the start.

“I know Kliff. I don’t really buy into it,” Murray said on the report. “I think he’s got a pretty good job right now.”

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