It's expected that Kyler Murray will be one of the first three or four quarterbacks taken in every draft. A modest improvement in passing and a massive jump in his rushing production propelled him to huge weekly numbers -- 32.1 points per game -- until he hurt his shoulder in Week 11. Then he ran and scored a lot less and averaged an ugly 17.8 points per game to end the year. People will draft Murray for his rushing prowess, but what if the Cardinals ask him to rush less to keep him from getting hurt? It's a risk factor, but it shouldn't be a deciding one. Rather, the Cardinals did little to improve their run offense this offseason and drafted flashy catch-and-run speedster Rondale Moore to help boost Murray's passing efficiency. Figure Murray's legs to still be involved, especially in the red zone where he had nine of his 11 run scores in 2020. A favorable schedule outside of the NFC West helps. That makes him worthy of a pick immediately after the likes of Patrick Mahomes and Josh Allen. If your league takes quarterbacks early, he'll be among them and won't be a good value, but if you can swipe him in Round 4 (or later), you'll feel great.
Murray believes his running ability "should be a luxury" for the Arizona offense, rather than a crucial component the way it was last season, ESPN.com's Josh Weinfuss reports. Fantasy managers were thrilled with his 133/819/11 rushing line, a big step forward after Murray put up 93/544/4 as a rookie. He hopes the team won't need him to run quite as much moving forward, in part because it's harder to do so when he's banged up. Murray does have a little more help in the pass-catching department this year, with the Cardinals bringing in 33-year-old A.J. Green and rookie second-round pick Rondale Moore, while James Conner replaces Kenyan Drake (LVR) in the backfield. The hope is to create a more balanced offense, after last year's attack largely relied on Murray's legs and DeAndre Hopkins' hands. That's not the worst formula, but a more versatile offense could improve Murray's passing efficiency, perhaps making up for any lost rushing volume.
Coach Kliff Kingsbury said Monday that Murray (ankle) still is limping but won't require offseason surgery, Katherine Fitzgerald of The Arizona Republic reports. Murray managed to retake the field despite injuring his ankle during Sunday's 18-7 loss to the Rams, but he clearly was hobbled upon doing so in the fourth quarter. That the second-year pro won't require surgery should bode well for his chances of making a full recovery in time for Arizona's offseason program. The 23-year-old emerged as a bonafide fantasy superstar this season, in no small part due to the 819 rushing yards and 11 scores he accumulated on the ground. Murray also took a step forward as a passer, racking up 3,971 yards through the air and a 26:12 TD:INT across 16 contests.
Murray (ankle) completed eight of 11 passes for 87 yards while rushing for three yards on a pair of carries during Sunday's 18-7 loss to the Rams. Murray had to exit Sunday's contest after absorbing a sack from Los Angeles' Morgan Fox on the opening drive, and he didn't retake the field until the 14:21 mark of the fourth quarter. Powering through his ankle injury, the first-time Pro Bowler demonstrated toughness in attempting to lead his team back in a must-win situation. Murray and the Cardinals' offense couldn't muster any scores over his final two drives, however, with the team's only trip inside Los Angeles' 40-yard line resulting in a blocked field-goal attempt. Arizona bows out of the season with an 8-8 record and no playoff appearance, while Murray boasted a 26:12 TD:INT with 3,971 passing yards. The 23-year-old's 819 rushing yards and 11 rushing scores stand as elite totals among quarterbacks as he enters his third year under contract with the Cardinals in 2021.
Murray (ankle) returned to Sunday's contest against the Rams. After Murray injured his ankle on the first drive of the game, he spent most of the next three quarters in the locker room or on the sideline throwing passes and operating a stationary bike while Chris Streveler generated seven points on the next eight possessions. Murray will look to put together a comeback effort.
Murray suffered an ankle injury during Sunday's road game versus the Rams, Josh Weinfuss of ESPN.com reports. Murray emerged from Week 16 with what was termed a lower leg issue, and he now has left the regular-season finale with an injury in that region. He's questionable to return, but if he doesn't rejoin his teammates on the field, Chris Streveler will lead the Cardinals offense.
|WK||DATE||OPP||OPP RANK||OPP FPTS|
|4||10/03||@Los Angeles Rams||1||15.56|
|5||10/10||San Francisco 49ers||9||18.25|
|8||10/28||Green Bay Packers||7||18.00|
|9||11/07||@San Francisco 49ers||9||18.25|
|14||12/13||Los Angeles Rams||1||15.56|
Red Zone Trends
|3 Year Avg||65.8||3846||23||12||682||8||381|