Rookie Clayton Tune on his draft-day declaration: ‘I want to back it up’

Jul 28, 2023, 3:40 PM

Clayton Tune...

(Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports)

(Tyler Drake/Arizona Sports)

Clayton Tune doesn’t normally consider himself a big rah-rah guy. Excuse him for being a little hyped on May 1 when, upon being drafted by the Arizona Cardinals in the fifth round, he made quite the bold claim:

“I think I’m the best quarterback in this class and God’s got a plan for me, so I wasn’t too stressed about it,” Tune said. “I didn’t have too many expectations, but I’m just happy to be a part of such a great organization and be able to live out my dream. I’m just happy to go in there to work and compete.”

Nearly three full months later and a few early days into Arizona’s training camp, Tune doesn’t regret saying what he did as the ninth quarterback off the board in the 2023 draft class.

“I don’t have any regrets but I think it’s just going to help me work harder, go out there and prove it every day,” Tune told Arizona Sports’ Wolf & Luke on Friday.

“I usually don’t make a lot of statements. I guess in the moment I was fired up and kind of spoke my mind. But if I do say something, I want to back it up and I want to prove it.”

Tune appears to be backing up his confidence in himself early on as a pro.

In a quarterback room with open reps with Kyler Murray sidelined to start the year, the Houston Cougars product who grew up as a Texas Longhorns fan in Plano, Texas, is learning from veteran Colt McCoy. And even with NFL-experienced David Blough and Jeff Driskel also on the roster, Tune was receiving second-team reps on Thursday.

Tune threw for 11,994 total yards in five seasons at Houston, piling up 104 touchdowns and 41 interceptions. In 2022 alone, he also showed his rushing ability with five scores and 544 yards on the ground.

“I felt like I had that ability,” he said Friday. “That’s not my first instinct to tuck it down and run, but if a play breaks down or there’s ever a time I need to scramble up the middle or whatever it is to get a first down, I’m willing to do that.”

Now, Tune wants to continue operating efficiently, avoiding negative plays and staying within the offense.

It’s all about continuing to learn that offense and working with the more experienced members of the quarterback room.

“I thought I’m able to make the reads they’re asking us to make and play on time and make the throws they’re asking us to make,” Tune said.

“It’s been good. Everyone in that room’s great. Everyone’s got a certain skill set. We’re all just playing within the offense and there’s certain plays that are tailored more to certain strengths. We’re all in there just helping each other, supporting each other.”

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