TEMPE – We’re only three weeks into the NFL season and quarterback Kyler Murray is already mentioned as an MVP candidate along with Patrick Mahomes, Matthew Stafford and Tom Brady, to name a few .
The hype train started rolling in week 1 and didn’t slow down for the appellant, who showed his precision and dynamic play early in year three.
Murray is in the top 5 among NFL callers in passing yards (1,005), completion percentage (76.5%) and passing touchdowns (7). He is tied for third in the NFL in rushing touchdowns (3) and was named NFC Offensive Player of the Week in Week 2.
The numbers are great, but there are two that mean a lot more to the caller; 3-0.
“What is week 4?” It is what it is, ”Murray said after practice Wednesday. “It’s a long season and I’ve always been raised and learned that if you win as a team, the individual accolades will come.
“That’s how I treated him in high school, that’s how I treated him when I won Heisman, same for now. I’m not really too worried about MVP or anything like that.
It seems Murray’s philosophy is spilling over into the wide receiver room.
One of the quarterback’s improvements this year has been his ability to distribute wealth.
Five pass catchers saw at least 15 targets make their way through three games, with AJ Green and DeAndre Hopkins pacing the team with 18 apiece, followed by Christian Kirk and Chase Edmonds at 17 apiece.
Edmonds leads receptions (17), Kirk has the most receiving yards (239) and Hopkins has found his team’s highest salary on three occasions. The numbers are a testament to how efficiently Murray distributes football.
“He’s going where his readings take him,” head coach Kliff Kingsbury said on Wednesday. “We know we have a dynamic group of receivers and when we’re scripting during the week we try to accommodate that and make sure the guys are touching and trying to maximize what they do best. “
The cardinals “hope” for Gardeck’s return next week; Phillips progresses
One of the changes to the Cardinals roster on Wednesday morning was to designate Cardinals linebacker Dennis Gardeck from the injured reserve.
After sustaining a hand injury, Gardeck was back on the training ground on Wednesday, an even more positive sign that the linebacker is set to return to action.
“We are not sure [Gardeck returning to the team in a full capacity] this week, but I would say hopefully next week, ”Kingsbury said Wednesday.
Gardeck is yet to play this year after returning from a torn ACL to sustain a hand injury that put him on the IR before Week 1.
As for Jordan Phillips, the return of the injured reserve defensive lineman is much more murky.
“I’m still making progress,” Kingsbury said. “I do not know exactly [on a timeline]. Hopefully sooner than later.
Phillips was placed on the IR with an undisclosed injury earlier this month and has yet to take a snapshot this season. Since signing a three-year contract with Arizona last offseason, Phillips has only played nine games as a Cardinal.