Cardinals’ Kliff Kingsbury expects hand-clapping fiasco ‘solved’
GLENDALE, Ariz. — When a coach enters the NFL for the first time, there’s usually a learning curve.
Especially when that coach is tailoring an offense to more of a college look as opposed to a traditional NFL style.
For head coach Kliff Kingsbury, Thursday night provided a learning moment for him and his rookie signal caller Kyler Murray.
In the team’s loss to the Oakland Raiders, Murray was called not once, but twice for false start penalties as he worked to keep the defense guessing with fake snaps (hand claps).
The penalties added to the QB’s and the team’s woes as Arizona struggled in their second preseason game of the year.
Instead of just moving on to the Minnesota Vikings game, however, Kingsbury is working with the officials ahead of the regular season to find more clarity with the rule as the team looks to avoid those type of penalties down the line.
“I feel like we’re in a good place with it. I just think it’s something new,” Kingsbury said ahead of practice Saturday. “There’s some subjectivity to it, but I think we’ve come to understanding and I feel good about it.”
According to Section 4, Article 2 of the NFL rulebook, “any quick abrupt movement by a single offensive player, or by several offensive players in unison, which simulates the start of the snap, is a false start.”
Item 4 of that article explains more regarding quarterbacks in the shotgun formation, Kingsbury’s primary plan of attack this season.
“A player who is in position to receive the snap in shotgun formation is permitted to shift his feet prior to the snap, but any quick and abrupt movement is a false start,” it reads. “This includes thrusting his hands forward when there is not a simultaneous snap.”
Basically, the rule comes down to a judgement call from the ones officiating the game.
While the debate has gone back and forth as to why Murray should or shouldn’t have been penalized, Kingsbury is looking inward to eliminate any potential guessing on the part of the referees.
“I think we have to be consistent in what we do,” Kingsbury said. “I think if we’re consistent then it’ll be called pretty much the same way across the board and after talking … with those guys I feel like we’re in a pretty good place.
“I think we understand their point of view and they understand ours, so I expect it to be solved,” the head coach added.
It’ll be interesting to see what potential changes will be made to Murray’s pre-snap routine with the added knowledge his head coach has received from the ongoing talks with officials.
Luckily, it seems Kingsbury’s on a mission to get things squared away before the games truly count in the win-loss column, if not sooner.