Josh Rosen was prepared to compete with Kyler Murray for Cardinals job

Apr 29, 2019, 10:42 AM
Arizona Cardinals quarterback Josh Rosen (7) looks to throw during an organized NFL team activity T...
Arizona Cardinals quarterback Josh Rosen (7) looks to throw during an organized NFL team activity Tuesday, April 23, 2019, in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Matt York)
(AP Photo/Matt York)

Josh Rosen didn’t know either. He wasn’t certain the Arizona Cardinals would draft Kyler Murray, effectively rendering him obsolete.

Not until the pick came in.

The Cardinals did select Murray to kick off the NFL Draft on Thursday, leading to a flurry of speculation and trade talks leading into the second day of the event.

“It wasn’t about, really, Josh,” Arizona GM Steve Keim told Doug & Wolf on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station Monday. “It was Kyler. It was about how unique he was, how talented he was … when you really think about the big picture, how are we going to catapult this organization to the next level?”

After Arizona drafted Murray, it apparently took Rosen a bit to understand that his future wasn’t with the Cardinals.

Keim said on Thursday, before trading Rosen to the Miami Dolphins, the team was open to retaining him. The general manager cited NFL injury statistics, noting the high rate of starting quarterbacks who are injured in each of the last three seasons. Nineteen starters have missed an average of 4.6 games each year, according to Keim, and the success rates of those players’ teams are low.

Maybe that was posturing to retain Rosen’s trade value.

The quarterback, however, looked at the Murray pick in a vacuum. According to Sports Illustrated’s Robert Klemko, Rosen told his agent that he was willing to compete with Murray.

His agent, Ryan Williams, knew better, as told by Klemko.

Williams called Rosen from his office with an update: The Cardinals might actually keep you. “If that’s their position,” Rosen told him, “then I’ll just beat him out and Kyler can be the backup.” Williams’ reply: “They don’t want that, and they know they don’t want that. We’re getting a trade done.”

Rosen later told Klemko that he understood the reality of the situation.

“I absolutely would have competed if they kept me, but I would’ve been kind of bummed about it because I knew I wouldn’t get a fair shake,” Rosen says. “A GM’s not going to draft a quarterback and draft another one the next year, higher, and then play the first one. It’s admitting you made two mistakes. It just wouldn’t happen. I wouldn’t hesitate to compete, but I would know preemptively I wouldn’t get a shot even if I won the competition.”

Now, none of that matters. Rosen was introduced as a Miami quarterback on Monday. There, he will compete with veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick for the starting job.

The second-year pro previously admitted to finding the trade rumors somewhat annoying heading into the draft, but he showed up to work in Tempe before being traded. When the Cardinals finally traded him for a 2019 second-round pick that became receiver Andy Isabella, plus a 2020 fifth-round choice, Rosen finally could move on.

“It felt like I got drafted twice,” he said.

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Josh Rosen was prepared to compete with Kyler Murray for Cardinals job