CARDINALS CORNER

Cardinals’ Kyler Murray reiterates need for pass catchers to stay locked in

Sep 26, 2022, 10:51 AM | Updated: 7:12 pm

GLENDALE — After another rough start from the Arizona Cardinals offense on Sunday, quarterback Kyler Murray and Co. looked to be figuring things out in the second half of the team’s 20-12 loss to the Los Angeles Rams.

Manufacturing four scoring drives in the second half, the Cardinals kept themselves within striking distance against a beatable Rams squad.

But when it came down to cashing in, Arizona couldn’t capitalize when it counted most, settling for four field goals and zero touchdowns in the loss.

Despite a career-high 58 pass attempts, quarterback Kyler Murray posted 314 yards and no scores on 37 completions. He followed up his electric rushing performance in Week 2 with only two rushes for eight yards, turning the dual-threat into one dimension.

And while the Rams defense played a big part in the stops and overall wrecking of Arizona’s game plan, the Cardinals did themselves no favors with miscues and dropped balls from key contributors — tight end Zach Ertz and running back James Conner both had uncharacteristic incompletions — and injury replacements like Andy Isabella breaking the unit’s rhythm.

“I told guys, ‘You have to be awake when you play with me,'” Murray said postgame. “‘No matter what the play is. I have free reign to do whatever, so when you sleep and you don’t think you’re getting the ball — you can’t play like that.’

“Everybody has to be head-up, in the game, locked in and we just have to be better. We will be, but it’s frustrating when you lose and you felt like you could have played better in the game.”

On top of getting on the same page as their quarterback, it’ll be about getting healthy for a good portion of Cardinals pass catchers entering the week.

Wide receiver A.J. Green, who was also not immune to the drops, left the matchup with a knee issue and did not return in the defeat.

Fellow pass catcher Rondale Moore is working his way back from a hamstring injury that has sidelined him for the first three games of the season. Head coach Kliff Kingsbury said Friday that the second-year pro could be back as early as this week but guarantees Week 5 at the latest.

Antoine Wesley is another name working to get back to full strength as he eyes a Week 5 return at the earliest from a groin/hip injury that placed him on the injured reserve. With DeAndre Hopkins suspended the first six games of the season, Wesley was expected to have an increased role in the offense before suffering his injury in training camp.

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