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Cardinals Connect During Pandemic Through Video Games

Kyler Murray once said "I was built for the quarantine life" and there is little doubt part of that reason is video games -- something a person could enjoy sitting alone in his (or her) house.

Football, however, is an in-person thing. Bonding matters for a team, and that was more difficult this offseason because of the coronavirus. The Cardinals may have been separated much of the offseason, but the ability to have virtual meetings has been well documented. That helped on the football side. And as it turns out, video games might've helped with the chemistry part of it too.

"I'm sure I can speak for about 80 percent of professional athletes that video games have been our No. 1 escape and savior during quarantine," wide receiver Christian Kirk said. "Especially me, Chase (Edmonds), Budda (Baker), Chandler (Jones), we're playing Call of Duty for hours a day after we get our workouts in.

"When you are an ultimate competitor, competition is one of the things you need in your life. It just gives us an opportunity to compete with one another, communicate. It's like being on the field, I think that's why we like it so much."

Murray has taken part in Madden tournaments this offseason. Kenyan Drake created a Madden league that he has live streamed. The COD group often livestreams their handiwork, and Edmonds often tweets out some of his best "plays" of the battlefield.

Jones admitted his video game exploits are specifically for that connection with teammates.

"I used to play video games all the time but I'm sitting here at 30 now with a daughter, I don't really have time to play video games," Jones said. "But when I do, I'm always trying to join with teammates, because we are not in the locker room. I don't have time to pick people's brains and build that camaraderie.

"There are times when the game is loading and I'm like, 'What did you do today? Did you work out? Did you break a sweat?' This was back when we weren't having workouts. I wasn't jumping on their case, I was just putting the thought in their head. So maybe they thought, 'Maybe I should get a workout in.' You'd be surprised, some of those things go pretty far."

Kyler Murray, Christian Kirk and Chase Edmonds.
Kyler Murray, Christian Kirk and Chase Edmonds.