The front office of the Arizona Cardinals should look into acquiring more experience for the backup quarterback spot in 2021
With just 20 seconds remaining in what was an awful loss this past weekend, things appeared to get even worse for the Arizona Cardinals. Trailing the San Francisco 49ers 20-12, and facing a fourth-down and six at their own 44-yard line, quarterback Kyler Murray unleashed a desperate pass. Unfortunately, the aftermath of that heave was far from positive for the Cards and their fans.
The fact that the attempt intended for wideout DeAndre Hopkins fell incomplete was just one part of the problem for the Redbirds. Another issue connected with the ill-fated play had to do with the hit that the diminutive Murray took at the end of it. It was a hard shot that left the second-year signal-caller lying on the field for several minutes, and writhing in pain on the Arizona sideline not long after.
Fortunately for the Cardinals, early reports indicate that the injury suffered by Murray is not a serious one. According to ESPN’s Ian Rapoport, the Cards passer “should be OK” after getting “leg-whipped” by 49ers defensive lineman Alex Barrett. The organization is hoping that’s true, because any playoff hopes that remain for the team would be gone if Murray was sidelined.
Throughout the current campaign, the number-one backup for Murray has been a player who has never thrown an NFL pass. In fact, Chris Streveler‘s main claim to fame is the career he enjoyed in the Canadian Football League. Could Arizona really trust the 25-year old question mark to keep the squad afloat if Murray was out for an extended period of time?
The other option at the quarterback position on the Cardinals roster is Brett Hundley, a 27-year old with nine starts on his NFL resume. Sure, the former Green Bay Packers draft pick has more experience as a performer in the league than Streveler does. Even so, what does it say for Hundley when the Cards would rather roll with the ex-CFL star as Murray’s primary replacement on gamedays?
One intriguing free agent option for Arizona in 2021 is Ryan Fitzpatrick, the 38-year old veteran who’s currently a member of the Miami Dolphins. The former Harvard University product proved he can still play this past Saturday night, when he engineered an incredible fourth-quarter comeback victory over the Las Vegas Raiders. Perhaps Arizona could persuade Fitzpatrick, an Arizona native, to act as Murray’s substitute for a season or two in the desert.
If the Cardinals hope to continue on as a playoff contender going forward, it’s imperative that they improve their backup quarterback situation. Streveler is a complete unknown at the current time. Cards general manager Steve Keim can certainly do better in that area when the offseason arrives.