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The Tangible Impact Of Kyler's Comeback

The numbers show Cardinals moved up league-wide when QB played

There are tangible reasons the Cardinals are sold on Kyler Murray as they move forward. 

Debates about quarterbacks are never-ending. That's understood. Lamar Jackson is going to be MVP, but his playoff loss will chase him on the talk-show circuit. Murray, like the rest of his QB brethren, isn't going to escape it either. But after the Cardinals inserted him into the lineup after Josh Dobbs (plus one Clayton Tune game) the improvement was not only noticeable -- that was expected -- but impressive when measured league-wide.

That started with the most basic stats. The Cardinals average 16.8 points a game pre-Kyler, which was 28th in the NFL, and 289.7 yards a game, which was 26th. After Murray returned? The points moved up to 22.4 -- 13th -- and the yards were top 10 with 362.8 -- 9th.

Table inside Article
Stat Wks 1-9 Rank Wks 10-18 Rank
First Downs 159 t-19th 171 t - 10th
Rushing Avg 4.78 4th 5.27 1st
Rushing Yds/Game 127.0 8th 152.8 2nd
Rushing TDs 7 t - 12th 10 t - 5th
Runs 10+ 31 t - 5th 40 2nd
Completion Pct 62.4 25th 65.7 10th
Passer Rating 76.9 28th 89.4 15th
Third Down Pct 36.5 23rd 41.8 10th
Scrimmage Yds/Touch 6.6 26th 7.4 11th

The Cardinals, with Kyler, also were in or around the top 10 in the league in yards per play (No. 10 at 5.6), successful play rate (No. 11 at 34.9 percent), scoring drive rate (No. 5 at 42.5 percent) and TD drive rate (No. 9 at 25 percent.) 

Individually, Murray completed 71 of 99 passes for 724 yards, six TDs and only one interception for a 108.3 passer rating in his final three games, which the Cardinals would've gone 2-1 if it wasn't for a couple of missed field goals. 

The numbers aren't perfect. The Cardinals need to score more than 22 points a game. But again, this is about what Murray can be in this offense as they move forward together, and what the coaching staff sees in that potential.

Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray (1) and Arizona Cardinals tight end Trey McBride (85) during the Week 12 regular season game between the Arizona Cardinals and the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday, Nov 26, 2023 in Glendale, AZ.