Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray didn’t disappoint in his first season in the desert
It was the tale of about three seasons for Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray in 2019. He started off slow, got a groove going in the middle part of the schedule, staggered some in early December and finished strong.
Murray was was one 5 finalists named for NFL Pepsi Rookie of the Year on Friday. Murray joins defensive end Nick Bosa of the San Francisco 49ers, running back Josh Jacobs of the Oakland Raiders, running back Miles Sanders of the Philadelphia Eagles, and receiver A.J. Brown of the Tennessee Titans.
Murray ended up being only the second rookie quarterback to have at least 3,500-yards passing and 500-yards rushing in his first season. Murray finished with 3,722-yards passing and 544-yards rushing.
What was interesting is the Cardinals went away from him running the ball often this season. It was sort of a mixed bag. One week his arm was doing the job, the next his legs.
He finished with 20 touchdown passes and just 12 interceptions. He had just 6 interceptions entering the month of December. However he also took a few more chances he wasn’t taking earlier in the season.
Murray’s main competition for the award is likely going to be Jacobs and Sanders. Jacobs seemed like would be the runaway winner despite the good season Murray was having. Jacobs had 1,150-yards rushing with 7 touchdowns.
He was injured at the end of the season however. He ended up playing in just 13 games. Whether voters will take that into consideration or not we’ll see.
Sanders came on late. He ended up with 818-yards rushing and 3 touchdowns. He had 381-yards in December alone. That could work in his favor given how fresh that is.
Bosa and Brown also had very good seasons. Is it enough to overtake Jacobs or Murray in the vote? Hopefully we will be talking about Kyler Murray, NFL Rookie of the Year the first weekend of February.