Cardinals QB Kyler Murray moves the chains in third preseason action
The third preseason game of the year is used as a dress rehearsal of sorts for starters across the NFL. A final tune up, if you will.
So while the Arizona Cardinals’ matchup with the Minnesota Vikings may not mean a thing in the record books, it’s the closest thing to meaningful football in August.
Especially for a rookie quarterback trying to fully acclimate himself to the speed of the NFL.
Saturday marked the most action Cardinals rookie Kyler Murray has seen all preseason as the signal caller played most of the first half (five drives), completing 14 of his 21 passing attempts for 137 yards with eight different pass catchers. He also chipped in nine yards on four carries.
While the touchdowns remained elusive Saturday afternoon, Murray was able to move the ball down the field on numerous occasions.
Following a three-and-out to open up the game, Murray found his footing the second time around.
Picking up two first downs, Murray and Co. were able to move the rock with a bit more ease, going 54 yards on eight plays.
More than half of that yardage came on one throw as Murray connected with wideout Damiere Byrd for 33 yards to move the chains. A screen pass to David Johnson extended the drive, going for 10 yards, while Murray found tight end Charles Clay for another four.
Looking at 3rd down and short on Minnesota’s 14-yard line, Murray turned to Christian Kirk for the score. But the WR was led just a bit too far by the QB, making the catch out of bounds. The drive ended with a 32-yard field goal courtesy of Zane Gonzalez.
Murray continued to find some success in his last two drives of the afternoon as well.
Starting on their own 25-yard line on both occasions, Murray and the Cardinals were able to string together 12 plays in each, going for 55 yards and 46 yards, respectively. Murray’s efficiency was heightened as well, tossing just three incompletions on 11 attempts between the two drives.
His longest pass of the day came on one of his last throws, finding rookie WR KeeSean Johnson for 29 yards.
Murray couldn’t find pay dirt, however, as both possessions resulted in field goals, giving the Cardinals a 9-7 lead with the rookie at the helm.