We all know the Arizona Cardinals had such a bad season in 2022 that, even if they finish 2-15 this season (half their win total as last year), you may still call the 2023 campaign the more successful of the two. One reason stems from the sheer player development that’s coming their way this year, and the potential redemption of quarterback Kyler Murray.
Last year, Murray’s maturity level hit a new low while his play on the field made you wonder whether former general manager Steve Keim made an ill-fated move to sign the fourth-year quarterback to such a large extension. After snagging Rookie of the Year in 2019 and two Pro Bowls in 2020 and 2021, Murray played like a quarterback who (mostly) had no business leading an NFL offense, and the Cardinals struggled to a 3-8 record when he lined up behind center.
As for 2023, Murray sounds as though he’s moving forward and putting 2022 well into the rearview, as he should. Here is a small sample of what he had to say on the subject during the new episode of "Flight Plan”, which goes live tomorrow.
""It's got to be a positive. There really is no option for it to be a negative. I feel you get your little grace period right after it happens, dwell on it, soak in it, let the feelings take over. After that, (expletive), we gotta go. Life doesn't stop. The job doesn't stop. And I'm not going to stop.""- Kyler Murray
Source: Kyler Murray Works Toward ACL Return: 'The Job Doesn't Stop' by Darren Urban, AZCardinals.com
Kyler Murray’s words should have Arizona Cardinals fans excited for 2023
Murray is absolutely right about everything he said in the above quote, especially following what was probably the lowest point of his career. The NFL season will arrive whether Murray’s cleared to play or not, and he’s right to have that sense of urgency, or so that’s what it sounds like in the above snippet.
Of course, Murray won’t fully prove that he’s changed his approach to the game until we see his actions on the field. If his body language and overall attitude doesn’t get better, then the words quoted above and on the next episode of “Flight Plan” will go to the wayside. Nonetheless, every action he’s taken so far this offseason has been positive, and the words in his latest interview are just the latest example.
We know what Murray can do on the field as he’s shown us more than a few flashes between 2019 and 2022. In terms of raw talent, few quarterbacks in the league can match Murray. If his newfound approach translates to the playing field, the Arizona Cardinals, even if most of the roster turns out as bad as the NFL universe believes, will at least be watchable in 2023.