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Adam SchefterESPN Senior AuthorOct 22, 2023, 06:12 AM ET3 Minute Learn

What Pat McAfee takes away from Kyler Murray’s return to practice

Pat McAfee breaks down what Kyler Murray returning to practice signifies for the Cardinals.

The Arizona Cardinals need Kyler Murray to play once more this season — so badly, in truth, that they’re keen to take the monetary threat that comes together with the quarterback’s return.

Murray, who returned to follow final week for the primary time since struggling a torn ACL final December, has $29.9 million in 2025 wage compensation that turns into absolutely assured subsequent March if he cannot go a bodily by then.

The one means to make sure that Murray can be wholesome by March 2024 can be to not play him, which the Cardinals do not wish to do.

Murray additionally would face among the NFL’s stoutest defenses upon his return, because the Cardinals’ remaining schedule consists of video games in opposition to the Browns, Ravens, 49ers, Steelers, Rams and Eagles — all groups with proficient defensive strains.

Murray is not going to play Sunday in opposition to the Seahawks, and the Cardinals haven’t circled a particular date for his return. Arizona has till Nov. 8 to activate Murray to the 53-man roster, that means the Cardinals’ Week 10 dwelling sport in opposition to the Falcons can be the most recent he may return this season.

Murray, 26, signed a five-year extension in July 2022 that retains him below contract via the 2028 season and consists of $160 million assured for damage.

Typically damage ensures in a participant’s contract are sufficient to drive the staff to bench him. Final season, for instance, the Raiders determined to bench quarterback Derek Carr quite than expose themselves to any monetary threat in his contract.

Carr had signed a three-year, $121. 5 million contract extension the earlier spring, however his $32.9 million wage for 2023 and $7.5 million of his 2024 wage would have grow to be absolutely assured if he suffered an damage. Reasonably than put $40.4 million of assured cash in danger, the Raiders despatched Carr dwelling and primarily reduce quick his time with the franchise.

The Cardinals introduced final Wednesday that Murray had been designated to return from the bodily unable to carry out record, opening his 21-day window to be activated to the 53-man roster. The previous No. 1 total draft choice took some first-team reps and began working in Arizona’s huddle, however the Cardinals haven’t disclosed a timeline for Murray’s return.

“It is thrilling for me,” Cardinals left sort out D.J. Humphries mentioned. “Simply seeing him working round … I do know he is trending in the best path. Once I seen him come within the huddle, I needed to like chill as a result of he was making an attempt to be calm and I used to be excited.”

Murray’s return might be an “organizational choice,” based on Cardinals coach Jonathan Gannon, who added that Murray might be a “large half” of these discussions.

Joshua Dobbs will begin at quarterback once more Sunday when the Cardinals (1-5) go to the Seahawks (3-2). Dobbs has been Arizona’s starter for all six video games this season, finishing 62.8% of his passes for 1,215 yards, six touchdowns and three interceptions.

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