is poised to make his long-awaited return from a serious knee injury, which is expected to happen soon. There are speculations that he might be back in action next Sunday when the Arizona Cardinals take on the Cleveland Browns. However, irrespective of Murray’s readiness, a change in quarterback is on the horizon for the Cardinals.
Jonathan Gannon, the Cardinals’ first-year coach, announced on Monday that either Murray or rookie will start in the game against the Cleveland Browns on Sunday. This decision follows the disappointing performance of fill-in quarterback Joshua Dobbs in the previous game.
In their latest defeat against the Baltimore Ravens, the Cardinals scored 10 points in the final minutes to make the final score of 31-24 appear more respectable. Dobbs threw two interceptions during the game, which the Ravens capitalized on by converting them into 14 points. The Cardinals were never able to fully recover from this setback.
Gannon refrained from blaming any individual player after the loss, but he stated on Monday that a change in the team’s starting quarterback is in order.
“Talked to all the quarterbacks this morning — we’re going to keep ramping up Kyler and see how he progresses through the week,” Gannon revealed. “And if it’s not Kyler, it’s going to be Clayton Tune.”
Murray was cleared to return to practice on October 18 after being designated as physically unable to perform. The Cardinals have 21 days from that date to activate Murray to the active roster. This means that Murray could make his comeback in either next week’s game against the Cleveland Browns on November 5 or against the Atlanta Falcons on November 12.
While Murray participated fully in practice last week, the Cardinals have taken a cautious approach in his recovery process.
Upon Murray’s return, he can expect to have a strong supporting cast. Rookie running back Emari Demercado has been performing well, rushing for 78 yards in the game against the Ravens. Second-year tight end Trey McBride has also been making significant contributions with 10 catches for 95 yards and a touchdown. Additionally, rookie receiver Michael Wilson had four catches for 58 yards.
“We’re in every game, we’re so close to winning and I think with the fight, the toughness, and the resilience that our team is showing, we’re not that far off,” McBride expressed. “It’s very encouraging to see the fight that we have, it’s not like we’re getting blown out or giving up, we’re fighting until the very end.”
Tune, a fifth-round pick out of Houston, showed promise during preseason and completed a pass for 4 yards in the Cardinals’ loss to the Seahawks on October 22.
The Cardinals’ defense had an impressive performance, limiting the Baltimore Ravens, led by Lamar Jackson, to just 268 total yards and an average of 4.5 yards per play. The return of Antonio Hamilton, Budda Baker, and Jalen Thompson to the secondary has significantly bolstered the team’s ability to stifle opposing offenses.
WHAT NEEDS HELP
The Cardinals currently rank 28th in the NFL in passing yards per game, a statistic that has dropped during their five-game losing streak. Dobbs has shown dedication and a positive attitude, but it is unlikely that this number will improve until Murray returns.
Demercado has been making the most of his opportunity, running for 136 yards in the past two games since starter James Conner was placed on injured reserve. Although he may serve as a depth piece when Conner is back, the Cardinals have been impressed with his progress.
“He’s playing good ball,” Gannon praised. “He’s playing really good ball right now. Stepped in. His carries have been going up. He had some production in there. He’s playing well.
Dobbs’ performance has been inconsistent. After spending seven years in the league, he finally had the chance to lead an NFL team, but the results have been mixed. Initially, he had a strong start during the first three weeks, but he has since struggled with interceptions and fumbles. With a career record of 1-9 as a starter, Dobbs’ future as a starting quarterback remains uncertain.
OL Trystan Colon left the game early with a knee injury and did not return.
No. 1 — Despite their struggles, the Cardinals are poised to have the first overall pick in the next NFL draft. With accumulating draft picks for 2024, the Cardinals will have the opportunity to bolster their roster with talented playmakers in various positions.
The Cardinals will head on the road to face the Cleveland Browns on Sunday.
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Olivia Carter revs up excitement in the world of NASCAR. As a dedicated motorsports enthusiast, she covers race results, driver profiles, and the latest developments in the NASCAR world, keeping fans on the edge of their seats.