Kyler Murray Tests Positive For Covid

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Kyler Murray
By Joe Glorioso | All-Pro Reels

It has been a very eventful summer for Arizona Cardinals starting quarterback Kyler Murray. The fourth-year pro has tested positive for Covid, and will miss five days of training camp. Backup quarterback Colt McCoy will likely handle first team reps while Murray is away from the team. Head coach Kliff Kingsbury described Murray’s symptoms as minor.

Recent Murray News

The relationship between Murray and the organization had been front and center before the recent news of his Covid diagnosis broke. The former University of Oklahoma standout had been angling for a lucrative contract extension. The Cardinals seemed a little reticent to agree to a deal at first, but were able to come to terms with their franchise quarterback on an agreement that was announced in late July. Arizona gave Murray a five-year extension worth as much as $230.5 million.

After the announcement, it seemed like everyone was ready to put the negotiation behind them and get ready for the start of the NFL season. However, a clause in Murray’s recently signed extension was leaked, which stipulated that he needed to watch at least four hours of game film a week.

This became headline news for several days, as many in the media wondered why the Cardinals felt this language needed to be included, and how this made it out to the general public. Narratives swirled about Murray’s work ethic, and whether he was truly committed to studying defensive tendencies in order to put his offense in the best position to succeed. Critics noted that the four hour per week baseline was a relatively low bar to clear, and that other quarterbacks sometimes watch that much film in a given day.

After a lot of public discussion, the Cardinals decided to remove the wording from the agreement since it had clearly caused a distraction. However, Murray felt compelled to make a statement to defend his level of preparation. He said that there are many different ways to study and analyze the game, and that it is disrespectful for people to think that he is not fully invested in the game. Murray talked about his stature, and the supreme athletes that he faces on a weekly basis, and remarked that it would not be possible for him to perform if he was not watching clips of defensive schemes.

Updated NFL Covid Protocol

It appears as if Murray will be expected back at Cardinals training camp shortly after his five day absence is completed. The NFL is not moving forward with the detailed Covid protocols that they had in place in prior seasons, which included frequent testing, and different rules of isolation depending on whether a player was vaccinated or unvaccinated.

However, the league still told NFL franchises a couple months ago that any player who tests positive must isolate for a minimum of five days. They sent this communication out in accordance with CDC guidelines.

When Murray does return to the field, it will be interesting to see if the Cardinals coaching staff will be inclined to get him ready to appear in their first preseason game against the Cincinnati Bengals on August 12.