Camp K report: Murray up-and-down, CB Jones has opportunity

Aug 13, 2019, 2:07 PM | Updated: 7:10 pm
Arizona Cardinals CB Chris Jones catches a pass during the team’s practice Sunday, Aug. 11, 2019,...
Arizona Cardinals CB Chris Jones catches a pass during the team’s practice Sunday, Aug. 11, 2019, at State Farm Stadium. (Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports)
(Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports)

GLENDALE, Ariz. — Kliff Kingsbury is not one to overplay things. Nor is he one to rail on one of his players to reporters.

So take his assessment of rookie quarterback Kyler Murray during an hour-long practice outdoors on Tuesday for what it’s worth.

“I think it was up-and-down. We did a little bit looser, kind of a call-it format. Had some ups, had some downs. I thought he operated fine,” Kingsbury said. “But it’s good. It’s a humbling game. It’s not always going to go your way. There’s a lot of factors that go into it.”

With the practice closed to the public and reporters unable to share their observations, here’s what else we learned from Cardinals camp on Tuesday, two days out from Arizona hosting the Oakland Raiders on ESPN.

Keep an eye on Chris Jones

Patrick Peterson’s work at cornerback will be scaled back in the coming weeks. Second-round pick Byron Murphy and vet Tramaine Brock are expected to slot into major roles in his place, but keep an eye on second-year pro Chris Jones in the next three preseason games.

The undrafted Nebraska product could very well be the next man up barring an injury to any of the three players ahead of him.

“Since I’ve watched him, he’s flashed, even in the spring,” Kingsbury said. “Big, physical, workman-like. He approaches his craft the right way and you like to see that. Excited to watch him play these next three weeks.”

Jones, who spent much of last season around the Cardinals but appeared in just two games, had three tackles and a pass defensed in the preseason game last Thursday against the Los Angeles Chargers.

“Ever since I’ve got the opportunity to play in this league, it’s always been keep my head down, grind,” he said Thursday. “Just keep doing what I’m doing, just make sure I keep coming to work every day.”

Receivers mix still a question

Kingsbury still hasn’t hinted at what the wide receiver room could look like come the regular season. He’s not even set on a number.

“I think six, seven, somewhere in there,” the head coach said. “I think it depends how guys perform the last three weeks and what they can do in other areas. So we’ll see how that plays out.”

Three drafted rookies are expected to join Christian Kirk and Larry Fitzgerald on the 53-man roster, and sixth-round pick KeeSean Johnson appears to be ahead of his young peers.

Second-round pick Andy Isabella is expected to debut in the preseason against Oakland after he missed the Chargers game with a minor knee injury, while fourth-round pick Hakeem Butler has lacked consistency making catches as a deep threat. He even dropped a short route against Los Angeles last Thursday.

Meanwhile, younger vets Damiere Byrd and Trent Sherfield have gotten the most run with the first team in the open practices over the last week. Falling behind all those players is veteran Kevin White, who remains sidelined with a hamstring issue.

“We just like to see him back out there performing and give himself a chance to compete and make the roster,” Kingsbury said of White.

Arizona Cardinals

Houston Texans defensive tackle Roy Lopez (91) battles Arizona Cardinals guard Justin Pugh during t...
Arizona Sports

Cardinals-Bears injury report: OL Justin Pugh a game-time decision

Arizona offensive lineman Justin Pugh missed a second straight day of practice Thursday with a lingering calf injury.
1 day ago
Head coach Kliff Kingsbury and Kyler Murray #1 of the Arizona Cardinals look on during the second h...
Tyler Drake

Kyler Murray, Isaiah Simmons not taking the Kingsbury-to-Oklahoma bait

Cardinals QB Kyler Murray isn't putting too much stock into the report that Oklahoma is targeting Kliff Kingsbury as its next head coach.
2 days ago
Arizona Cardinals WR DeAndre Hopkins returns to the practice field Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021, in Temp...
Tyler Drake

Cardinals WR DeAndre Hopkins, QB Kyler Murray easing back in practice

The Cardinals saw one of their biggest pieces offensively in wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins make his return to the practice field on Wednesday.
2 days ago
Arizona Cardinals defensive end Zach Allen (94) celebrates his sack against the San Francisco 49ers...
Tyler Drake

Back at it: Kliff Kingsbury, Cardinals use bye week to their advantage

While the time away from the football field is needed for any team, there's a fine line between refueling and getting complacent.
3 days ago
Arizona Cardinals RB Jonathan Ward runs through a drill during training camp Thursday, July 29, 202...
Jake Anderson

Arizona Cardinals place RB Jonathan Ward on Reserve/COVID-19 list

The Arizona Cardinals placed RB Jonathan Ward on the Reserve/COVID-19 list on Tuesday. He has not played since Oct. 28 due to a concussion.
3 days ago
Chicago Bears quarterback Justin Fields warms up before an NFL football game against the Baltimore ...
Tyler Drake

The final countdown: A look at the Cardinals’ remaining matchups in 2021

With the bye done and over with, it's time for the Arizona Cardinals to reengage for a final playoff push to end the season.
3 days ago
Camp K report: Murray up-and-down, CB Jones has opportunity