Kyler Murray and the Arizona Cardinals appear to be somewhat at odds right now. The Pro Bowl quarterback looked like an MVP candidate early in the 2021 NFL season, but things began to unravel for Arizona down the stretch. The 34-11 loss to the Los Angeles Rams in the Wild Card Round of the playoffs capped a disappointing late-season collapse.
Murray has since subtly hinted that he’s not 100% happy with his current situation. The 24-year-old signal-caller appeared to scrub his Instagram profile of any Cardinals-related content and unfollowed the team. The drama is not a good look for either side right now.
Hall of Fame defensive lineman Warren Sapp recently weighed in on the strange situation out of Arizona and had some choice words for Murray.
Warren Sapp calls out Kyler Murray’s recent behavior
Kyler Murray’s social media cleanse obviously caught the attention of many people. Given today’s society, that should not have surprised the Arizona Cardinals star one bit.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Oakland Raiders great Warren Sapp recently joined The Rich Eisen Show and chimed in on Murray’s social media move.
“These kids need to understand,” said Sapp. “Do not let your timeline become your lifeline. Live a life that social media doesn’t dictate what’s really going on. Why in the hell would you, as the franchise quarterback, unfollow them and then acid wash scrub? What are you doing?”
Sapp suggests the antics are Murray’s way of letting the Cardinals know he wants out.
ESPN’s Chris Mortensen recently revealed a report alluding to the friction between Murray and the organization. Even though the third-year quarterback hasn’t confirmed that there’s trouble in paradise, that sure seems to be the case.
Sapp says the Cardinals QB ended the 2021 season on a bad note
The Instagram scrubbing isn’t the only problem Warren Sapp has with this apparent beef between Kyler Murray and the Cardinals. The Hall of Fame defensive tackle suggests that Murray didn’t play well at the end of the season, especially in the Wild Card Round loss to the LA Rams.
“That playoff game, you’re only as good as your last game,” said Sapp. “I want to know what the hell you were doing in that end zone when you flipped that ball up on that pick six. I’ve never seen that. Gift wrap six? And you’re down 14?”
The four-time All-Pro is referring to an interception Murray threw in the second quarter. The Texas A&M product felt the pressure from the Rams defense on third down. Instead of throwing the ball away properly, Murray awkwardly tossed the ball in the air, leading to a David Long interception return for a touchdown.
The two-time Pro Bowler completed just 19 of 34 pass attempts for 137 yards, zero touchdowns, and two interceptions. It was a performance to forget.
“Son, I watched that game,” Sapp added. “That didn’t look like an NFL quarterback. Not one in the playoffs. This is the best of the best, a run for a championship. And that’s the performance you put up? And then you want to scrape your Instagram of the Cardinals. Maybe the Cardinals need to wipe themselves of you. Evidently, you ain’t on the right program.”
The shocking developments from Arizona are alarming, but Kyler Murray and the Cardinals must resolve this situation sooner than later.
Can Murray become a consistently elite NFL quarterback?
Kyler Murray entered the league with plenty of hype. He was a star on the baseball field and the gridiron. The No. 1 overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, Murray had high expectations already set for him.
The Bedford, Texas native has shown flashes of brilliance in his first three seasons. He appeared on pace to put together his most productive season by far in 2021. Murray threw for 3,787 yards, 24 touchdowns, and 10 interceptions in 14 games.
The Cardinals began the season 7-0, and Murray looked like a prime MVP candidate leading the way. However, Kliff Kingsbury’s squad hit a rough patch that it could never recover from. It carried over into the postseason, as Arizona (and Murray) laid an egg against LA.
Whatever the rift is between the star quarterback and the organization needs to end soon, or the Cardinals will be facing yet another disappointing season in 2022. The entire team must be better, but as the franchise player, Murray needs to take more accountability for his performance on the field and his actions off it.
Kyler Murray is only 24 years old and likely has a bright future ahead of him. The natural talent isn’t up for debate. However, he must take the next step to move into the elite conversation.
All stats courtesy of Pro Football Reference.