Red & White notebook: Cardinals knock rust off, Colt McCoy impresses

Aug 7, 2021, 5:12 PM | Updated: Aug 9, 2021, 7:55 am

GLENDALE — The Arizona Cardinals got their first real taste of the season with their Red & White practice on Saturday.

More than anything, the practice provides the players and coaches with the opportunity to work on the little things like communicating calls and getting a general feel for the game flow.

It also showcases the new team to the fans in attendance.

For quarterback Kyler Murray, this year’s Red & White practice marked his second since coming into the league in 2019 due to COVID-19 shuttering the event last season.

And like most of his teammates, not everything was firing on all cylinders, as expected.

The practice was an up-and-down showing for Murray, who went 9-for-19 (47.4%) and tossed an interception to cornerback Darqueze Dennard during 11-on-11s, while adding a 14-yard run. He also threw a pick to Malcolm Butler during 7-on-7s.

Communication issues hindered the first team as well, with confusion between Chase Edmonds and Murray and a false start leading to a stalled drive after a promising start from their own 25-yard line. The drive ended with an overthrown ball to tight end Maxx Williams in the end zone.

It didn’t help the quarterback was without both A.J. Green and Rondale Moore due to injuries. The two wide receivers are figured to be contributors to the team’s passing attack in 2021.

But Murray wasn’t the only talking point from Saturday’s action.

A look at who else stood out during the Red & White practice:

– Presumed backup quarterback Colt McCoy stole the show with his accuracy running with the second-team on Saturday, connecting on four of his first five passes to start 11-on-11s.

He also turned in one of the longest passes of the day, finding running back Eno Benjamin for 21 yards on the catch and run.

“I had not played in this system before, so I really worked hard this offseason,” McCoy said Tuesday. “The first part of it was on Zoom. I got to be out here for three weeks, just really watching Kyler play, listening to Kliff install and really just diving in to understand what I need to do to play here.”

– With Green and Moore sidelined, wide receivers Andy Isabella and KeeSean Johnson got extra work with both the first and second teams.

The duo was targeted often, combining for eight catches with Murray and McCoy throwing the ball.

Isabella also saw time as the team’s return man and as a gunner on special teams.

Andre Baccellia also made a few catches while running with the 1s and 2s, including two catches of at least 12 yards.

– The defense appeared ready for the task at hand, while the likes of J.J. Watt, Dennis Gardeck and Jordan Phillips work to get back to full strength for the season.

Dennard kicked things off with the interception of Murray early in the first series of 11-on-11s. Two plays later, linebacker Chandler Jones got in on the fun, “sacking” Murray.

Byron Murphy also came down with a pick, but it was negated due to a defensive penalty.

Of the new faces in the secondary, cornerback Marco Wilson continued to get some run with the first team, while the defensive line added steady pressure throughout.

Neither of the first or second teams scored touchdowns on Saturday.

– While the passing game worked to get back into form, the running game flashed potential, with offseason addition James Conner rattling off runs of seven and 26 yards on his lone carries.

– Kicker Matt Prater was a perfect 5-of-5 on Saturday, with his longest make coming from 42 yards out.

Presented By
Western Governors University

Arizona Cardinals

Marvin Harrison Jr. looks on...

Tyler Drake

Report: Marvin Harrison Jr. skipping NFL Scouting Combine ahead of 2024 draft

Marvin Harrison Jr. is reportedly skipping the 2024 NFL Scouting Combine to better prepare for his rookie season.

3 hours ago

Kyler Murray...

Tyler Drake

Arizona Cardinals ‘nothing but impressed’ with QB Kyler Murray entering Year 6

Cardinals owner Michael Bidwilll and general manager Monti Ossenfort are pleased with what Kyler Murray is bringing to the table.

2 days ago

Zaven Collins celebrates...

Tyler Drake

Zaven Collins’ 5th-year option around $13 million if picked up by Cardinals

Given where Zaven Collins slots in on the fifth-year option tiers, the Cardinals would be on the hook for $13.2 million if they pick it up.

2 days ago

Arizona Cardinals GM Monti Ossenfort talks with head coach Michael Bidwill...

Tyler Drake

Bidwill: Cardinals GM Monti Ossenfort has resources necessary to attack free agency

Arizona Cardinals owner Michael Bidwill is excited for what GM Monti Ossenfort has cooking when it comes to 2024 free agency.

3 days ago

Arizona Cardinals owner Michael Bidwill in the Arizona Sports studio...

Jesse Morrison

Arizona Cardinals owner Michael Bidwill gushes about GM Monti Ossenfort 1 year into job

Cardinals owner Michael Bidwill seems pleased with how general manager Monti Ossenfort and head coach Jonathan Gannon have done so far.

3 days ago

Presented By...

Arizona Sports Video

Video: Arizona Cardinals owner Michael Bidwill talks belief in Monti Ossenfort and Jonathan Gannon

Arizona Cardinals owner Michael Bidwill joined Bickley & Marotta for Newsmakers Week and talked about his belief in Monti Ossenfort and Jonathan Gannon.

3 days ago

Red & White notebook: Cardinals knock rust off, Colt McCoy impresses