The Arizona Cardinals and Kyler Murray have closed the book on months of back and forth regarding a new deal.
According to reports, the former first overall pick has signed a five-year $230 million extension with the Cardinals with an average annual salary of $46.1 million. $160 million is fully guaranteed.
Murray is entering his fourth season as the Cardinals starting quarterback and was in line for an extension. The team had announced they picked up the fifth year option on Murray’s rookie deal as a first round selection.
Cardinals looking for better results
The Cardinals have gone 22-23-1 in three seasons with Murray at the helm. Murray in total has thrown 70 touchdowns, 34 interceptions, and has an average QBR of 58.3.
Murray’s deal comes after making just one playoff appearance in three seasons with the Cardinals getting thumped by the eventual Super Bowl Champion Rams, 34-11.
Murray’s contract is the second highest per year salary in NFL history. Earlier this off-season, the Cleveland Browns traded for, and extended DeShaun Watson to a $230 million, fully guaranteed deal. The Green Bay Packers are currently giving reigning MVP Aaron Rodgers $50 million per year.
For a quarterback who has not won a playoff game, Murray’s contract will only increase the average cost of the most expensive position in football.
It also complicates other quarterback/team negotiations such as in Baltimore where the Raves and Lamar Jackson have been negotiating on a long-term deal.
The Cardinals locking up Murray closes one door in a complex off-season. Murray may be back with Arizona for the long-term, but his star wide receiver is still suspended, and the team also lost other key free agents months ago.
With DeAndre Hopkins being suspended for six games due to a violation of the league’s policy on performance-enhancing substances. Questions have also surrounded Murray’s head coach. Kliff Kingsbury’s future in Arizona has also been questioned after slow finishes to each of his first three seasons.
Murray, now one of the highest players in football history, will be asked to shoulder the load for both his coach and receiver in the first half of the season.
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