Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray is arguably the NFL’s most volatile player when it comes to rankings. Some rankings have slotted Murray toward the bottom, while others have at least given the fifth-year quarterback a solid shake.
The Athletic’s survey, which included 50 random NFL executives, coaches, coordinators, and analytics experts, ranked Murray a solid 13th, which also made him the first quarterback ranked in Tier 3 (out of a possible five), in front of names like Jared Goff, Russell Wilson, Daniel Jones, Tua Tagovailoa, Justin Fields, Brock Purdy, and Geno Smith.
Of the 50 voters, 31 placed Murray into Tier 3, but 18 put him in Tier 2, and a single brave soul placed the former top pick in Tier 1. While this was basically an inverse of last season, in which 32 placed him in Tier 2 and 17 put him in Tier 3, it shows that many around the NFL still believe Murray can be a prominent starter in this league, so long as he has help in the running game.
Arizona Cardinals quarterback still in the Top 15 at his position
I’ve said this often, but Murray is finally in the right offense that will let him become interdependent, as opposed to putting the offense onto his shoulders. Under Kliff Kingsbury and the former coach’s college-like “Air Raid” offense, Murray struggled when his favorite target, DeAndre Hopkins, wasn’t on the field.
Well, Murray will be without Hopkins this season, and likely for the remainder of his career unless something unforeseen occurs. Luckily for Murray, he will be handing the ball off a lot when he’s ready to return. And behind what should be a solid offensive line, the running game should be effective enough to force opposing defenses to respect it, which will open the pass.
For Murray, that could be all he needs to see himself become a respectable starter once again league-wide, without question. And given the fact that The Athletic’s poll contained 50 people heavily involved in the NFL through varying capacities, it only reinforces my viewpoint that it’s premature to chalk up Murray as a bust. Let’s see what the soon-to-be 26-year-old can do under Petzing first, then we can draw our conclusion.
Source: NFL Quarterback Tiers 2023: Mahomes, Burrow take over Tier 1, Hurts vaults to top of Tier 2 by Mike Sando, The Athletic