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Trace McSorley Trying To Turn Arizona Opportunity Into Success

Young quarterback learning from Murray, McCoy

Quarterback Trace McSorley throws a pass during a recent OTA.
Quarterback Trace McSorley throws a pass during a recent OTA.

After leaving one practice last year in late November, Trace McSorley received a vital notification on his iPhone.

The message was from his agent, informing McSorley the Cardinals had just claimed him off the Baltimore Ravens' practice squad.

The thought of joining one of the best teams in the league was exciting for the quarterback. However, McSorley's transition process to the desert was an interesting one.

"The Ravens still wanted me to travel with them for their (Week 11 matchup) with the Bears," McSorley said. "I suited up for that game because Lamar (Jackson) was sick.

"I was with Baltimore through Sunday, flew back with them that night, and got on a plane to come here on Monday morning."

Although the move across the country wasn't smooth as it could've been, the timing of his arrival was ideal. The Cardinals were on a Thanksgiving bye week, allowing McSorley the luxury of learning the playbook early with co-passing game coordinator Cam Turner while acclimating to his new environment before his new teammates returned from break.

Antoine "Tweezy" Wesley, one of the bigger personalities in the Cardinals' locker room, was the first to reach out and welcome McSorley to Arizona. They spent time together in Baltimore and were elated to be reunited.

McSorley, a sixth-round pick in 2019, is still looking to make his mark in the league after a productive college career at Penn State that included nearly 10,000 passing yards and 80 touchdown passes. It's why besides enjoying the beautiful Arizona weather, McSorley is trying to learn from quarterbacks Kyler Murray and Colt McCoy.

"Kyler can see the game in a way many can't," McSorley said. "He can see where he wants guys to be within concepts and the routes and is always trying to attack defenses. He's always trying to make the big play and always trying to make something happen. He's good at it, and it benefits him and our offense very well.

"Colt is well-versed in the game. He can manipulate a defense with his eyes and pre-snap motions, and the way he looks deep into each read are things I've learned from being around him."

McSorley said Arizona's space offense is much different from his previous one in Baltimore and acknowledged coach Kliff Kingsbury's system is tailored towards giving players the chance to be "playmakers".

"That's something I've enjoyed," McSorley said. "To let guys go out, play fast, and play free. I think that elevates the play of everybody on the field."

This offseason, McSorley has lived in the playbook and watched film obsessed with understanding the offense better. Kingsbury has helped his development immensely in some important areas: Being clear, concise, and communicating.

McSorley is currently the third quarterback on the depth chart behind McCoy and Murray, but his only focus is to control his situation with preparation. It's also one of the things the 26-year-old has learned from being around McCoy's veteran leadership.

"He's always ready," McSorley said. "How he prepares, watches film, understands gameplans, especially during this offseason. He's talking to guys and carrying himself like a starter.

"I try to carry myself the same way, and being around him has just elevated that more. I don't wish an injury on any quarterback ahead of me, but I will be ready if the opportunity comes."

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