Bidwill: Interpretation of Kyler Murray’s social scrub not reality
Arizona Cardinals owner Michael Bidwill said Friday that team leadership has been in frequent communication with quarterback Kyler Murray this offseason, downplaying any controversy caused after Murray’s social media scrubbing and the reports that followed, which indicated a rift between the franchise and player.
“I spoke to him last night. We’ve had good conversations non-stop,” Bidwill told Arizona Sports’ Bickley & Marotta. “I’m not a social media guy … I think there was a lot of interpretation around that that was inconsistent with the conversations that not just I have had, but I know (coach Kliff Kingsbury and general manager Steve Keim) have had — positive conversations that are going in the right direction. We know we’ve got to get better.
“You saw that Kyler put out a statement — ‘love me or hate me’ was his terms, ‘I’m going to get better.’ Put me in the category of: I love him and I know he’s going to get better.”
Earlier in February, Murray caused a stir by deleting all but two of his Instagram posts. Fans noticed he also did not follow team accounts.
Less than a week later on Super Bowl Sunday, the mystery had added context when ESPN’s Chris Mortensen and NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo reported that there was at least a communication rift between the NFL team and franchise quarterback.
Mortensen said he learned Murray was “frustrated” for feeling like the scapegoat to an ugly ending to Arizona’s 2021 campaign, a Wild Card loss to the Los Angeles Rams that followed a 1-4 close to the regular season. Both Mortensen and Garafolo indicated that, from the Cardinals’ side of things, there was belief Murray had more room to grow as a leader.
Because Murray is up for an extension and heading into his fourth year, all of that was enough for the team on the day of the Super Bowl, Feb. 13, to issue a statement in support of Murray to Arizona Sports’ Tyler Drake and other reporters.
A day later, Murray through his social media accounts issued his own statement to tone down speculation.
Bidwill on Friday reiterated to Bickley & Marotta that Murray is the team’s quarterback of the future. Bidwill said the team feels there is plenty of time to discuss a contract extension this offseason.
“We’ve got time but they’re complicated,” Bidwill said. “We also have other priorities. Free agency starts here in a couple of weeks. We’ve got to get some guys re-signed.”