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Kyler Murray's First Week Includes First-Unit Work

Quarterback has gotten most reps with the backups against starting defense

Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray (1) during practice at the Dignity Health Training Facility on Wednesday, October 18, 2023 in Tempe, AZ.
Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray (1) during practice at the Dignity Health Training Facility on Wednesday, October 18, 2023 in Tempe, AZ.

Kyler Murray is getting some practice reps with the starting unit, but he's spent most of his first week back on the practice field leading the second unit and facing the Cardinals' No. 1 defense.

"Right now, we're just worried about him getting back in the flow of things," quarterbacks coach Israel Woolfork said after Friday's practice.

Earlier in the day, Cardinals GM Monti Ossenfort, during an appearance on the "Wolf and Luke" show on Arizona Sports, reiterated again Murray's need to work on a football field again after nearly 11 months away.

Asked when the Cardinals are targeting for Murray's return to game again, Ossenfort said "I can't give you an exact time."

Murray was designated to return on Oct. 18. He remains on the Physically Unable to Perform list; the Cardinals have 21 days since his practice window opened in order to put him back on the 53-man roster. Murray was officially ruled out on Friday from being activated for Sunday's game in Seattle.

Murray's presence in meetings all offseason has made the transition much easier, Woolfork said. Murray is back to full health; it's the learning curve of running the offense and the mental work to play football again after a serious injury that the fifth-year player must hone now.

Murray has also spent time coaching some of the practice-squad players with whom he is working.

Woolfork said working against the defensive starters was an "awesome tool" to help prep Murray for his eventual return.

"It's different when you're going against the 1s," Woolfork said. "The speed of it I think will get our team ready to play."

PRACTICE SQUAD MOVE

With Murray's return getting closer, the Cardinals release quarterback Jeff Driskel from the practice squad. To fill the spot, the team re-signed running back Tony Jones Jr. to the practice squad. Jones had been claimed off waivers last week to the active roster and then released earlier this week.

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