ARIZONA CARDINALS

Steve Keim says Cardinals keeping Kyler Murray negotiations confidential

Mar 1, 2022, 1:28 PM
General Manager Steve Keim of the Arizona Cardinals looks on before the game against the Seattle Se...
General Manager Steve Keim of the Arizona Cardinals looks on before the game against the Seattle Seahawks at Lumen Field on November 21, 2021 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)
(Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

Arizona Cardinals general manager Steve Keim said at the NFL Draft Combine on Tuesday that he will keep contract extension negotiations between Kyler Murray’s camp and the team confidential.

Keim addressed the public contract leveraging by Murray’s agent Erik Burkhardt a day after Burkhardt released a letter of a statement putting the pressure on Arizona to offer their starting quarterback an extension. Murray enters his fourth NFL season eligible for the Cardinals to offer an extension.

“I have not talked to them in a few days but there has always been current dialog,” Keim told reporters. “The one thing I will say in regards to the statement … I think it’s an agent doing his job. I have a lot of respect for Erik Burkhardt, obviously (for) Kyler Murray.

“Everybody has different styles. You have to understand people have different ways of approaching things.”

Keim pointed to his goals of keeping negotiations private but also to keep emotions and personal feelings out of them. He cited the extension negotiations with receiver DeAndre Hopkins, who negotiated on his own behalf, as an example of not allowing feelings to get in the way of the business.

The GM added that the team will pick up a fifth-year option on Murray’s contract. The deadline for that is in early May, and it will ensure Murray would play for the team through 2023, a season in which he will make $29.7 million (he earned an increase for reaching multiple Pro Bowls before the option deadline and the amount is the same as the 2022 quarterback franchise tag).

Murray will make just $5.5 million in cash in 2022 because he received a large payment upon signing with Arizona as the No. 1 overall pick. He carries a cap hit of $11.4 million next season.

Earlier at the combine on Tuesday, Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury said he and Murray were on good terms. Kingsbury added that he keeps the business side separate in relationships with Murray and Burkhardt.

Burkhardt wrote Monday that they “sent a detailed contract proposal to the organization” that aligns with the quarterback market, “lowers his 2022-23 salary cap number” and “most importantly represents a real commitment from the organization to see if their ultimate goals align with his.

“Actions speak louder than words in this volatile business,” a highlighted portion of Burkhardt’s letter reads.

“It is now simply up to the Cardinals to decide if they priotize their rapidly improving 24-year-old, already 2X Pro Bowl QB, who led the organizaiton from 3 wins before his arrival to 11 wins and their first playoff appearance in 5 years,” the letter continued.

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