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NFL Exec: Kyler Murray 'Will Always Be Limited' by 'Size and Unwillingness' in Pocket

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured Columnist IVJanuary 23, 2023

GLENDALE, ARIZONA - NOVEMBER 06: Kyler Murray #1 of the Arizona Cardinals reacts during an NFL Football game between the Arizona Cardinals and the Seattle Seahawks at State Farm Stadium on November 06, 2022 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images)
Michael Owens/Getty Images

Kyler Murray's development stagnated this past year, and one NFL team executive posited it could reflect a larger issue for the Arizona Cardinals star.

Speaking with The Athletic's Mike Sando, the anonymous exec cited the team's "older roster" and Murray's "contract/injury situation" as drawbacks to taking over as Arizona's head coach.

"I don't know how much better Kyler can be," they said regarding the veteran quarterback. "He might have hit his ceiling, and will always be limited by his size and unwillingness to stand in there and get hit."

Whoever succeeds Kliff Kingsbury as coach will do so knowing Murray is likely to miss the start of the 2023 NFL season with a torn ACL. Once he returns to the field, the two-time Pro Bowler will have some skeptics to still win over.

Murray was the NFL's Offensive Rookie of the Year in 2019 after throwing for 3,722 yards and 20 touchdowns and running for 544 yards and four scores. He continued to ascend in Years 2 and 3, justifying the Cardinals' decision to select him first overall in the draft.

The trouble is, Murray's production this past season prior to the ACL injury wasn't much better than what he delivered in his first year. In 11 starts, his passer rating (87.2) was nearly equal to 2019 (87.4), while his QBR had fallen slightly from 57.7 to 51.6.

The 5'10" signal-caller hasn't made the breakthrough you'd hope to see from a franchise QB, especially one who hasn't even started his five-year, $230.5 million extension.

To the executive's point, maybe that quantum leap is never coming.