The recent contract between the Arizona Cardinals and star quarterback Kyler Murray has been the topic of discussion lately. Murray is not only becoming the second highest-paid quarterback in the National Football League, but his contract also includes some uber-interesting clauses.
The most raved about so far would have to be the requirement that Murray spends at least four hours per game week studying film independently. Many were quick to jump on this clause and claim it was a punishment for Murray, but for some it just made sense. Former NFL six-time Pro Bowler, 1973 MVP and Hall of Fame running back O.J. Simpson had his own take that he posted to Twitter following a boundless introduction.
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Simpson Goes Into Detail in Video About Murray’s Contract
“This is something I assume all quarterbacks do,” Simpson stated in a video on Twitter. “I had a friend that said to me this doesn’t make sense, this is a Pro Bowl-caliber player. Why are they doing this to him? This is embarrassing.”
Explain the situation he did, giving those who did not play professional football a perspective of his own.
“Let’s say I’m a running back in a trap play and my guard is supposed to trap, let’s say, [Los Angeles Rams defensive tackle] Aaron Donald,” Simpson said. “We run the play, [the guard] tries to block [Donald], he misses and I get tackled. That’s the way it goes. But if we ran the play and he didn’t go after Aaron and went after a linebacker or defensive end, and I get tackled by Aaron, I’m going to be pissed.”
Simpson then moved on to Murray.
“Kyler Murray’s dropping back to pass,” he said. “He has a primary receiver, and secondary receiver. That’s determined by what kind of defense [the opposing team is] running. Let’s say that the primary receiver ran his route and got open, but Kyler threw the ball to another guy and completed it, or took off and got a first down. The fans are cheering, and the announcers are saying he’s a Pro Bowl-caliber player, but that primary receiver is jogging back to the huddle with mixed emotions.
“On Monday, you look at the footage. And let’s say that happened four, five, or six times a game. That can’t happen, you need consistency, that’s what Bill Walsh and Belichick tell [their players]. You gotta be on the same page, because eventually it’s going to bite you in your butt, and you saw that happen in the playoffs. I suspect that’s why they want Kyler to study the defenses a little more and throw to the right guy.”
Simpson speculated that Murray’s admitted aversion to studying film could have resulted in his late-season derailment from the success the Cardinals had seen in the first half of 2021.
Between Week 13, and their 34-11 wild-card loss to the Los Angeles Rams, the Cardinals went 2-5. Murray threw for seven touchdown passes and five interceptions during that span, with an average competition percentage of 61.1% His average quarterback rating was also 65.1%. Simpson promises that if Murray can spend more time studying film and dedicating more time to his craft it will pay off.
NFL Insider Agrees With Contract Clause
“Kyler Murray does 4 hours of game studying on his own, anyway,” Ian Rapoport tweeted on July 25 in regard to the clause. “And similar to the team wanting him around for the offseason as the face of the franchise, AZ wanted a commitment in writing while going to a certain place money-wise. Thus, the clause”
Murray did not take it kindly that anyone could believe the notion he did not study film on his own.
Murray, who is entering his fourth season in the NFL, is expected by many to have a breakout season in which the Cardinals could become the third straight team to win the Super Bowl in its stadium.