It was not a shock because of the speculation and really the fact it was the worst kept secret in the NFL, but it was a shock because it breaks the mold.
Pete Prisco of CBS Sports came to Arizona to get a first hand look and talk with Murray and new head coach Kliff Kingsbury.
It is a great article, make sure you check it out, but there were a couple of things to highlight.
Prisco talked a lot about Murray’s size and the limit that could put on him, but one thing that stood out to Prisco, someone who does not like the smaller quarterbacks, was just how impressive Murray’s arm and release is:
When he throws from the pocket, the ball comes out with an impressive release – Dan Marino-quick – and it gets on top of the receiver in hurry and accurately.
Anyone that knows football knows that Dan Marino has long been the standard of a quick release. His ability to get the ball out at the last second, combined with his Howitzer of an arm, helped make him a Hall of Famer. So, when Prisco invokes Marino’s name, Murray knows it means something:
“It’s quick, huh,” he said smirking confidently.
When I mentioned Marino, he understood what that meant.
”That’s a big compliment,” he said. “You have a long release and DBs are quick to the ball. Defenses are great in this league. The long release isn’t helping you.”
That’s the thing, Murray has been short his whole life. He was short when he went 43-0 at Allen High School in Texas, he was short when he started as a true freshman at Texas A&M and he was short when he won the Heisman at Oklahoma, putting up one of the greatest statistical seasons from a quarterback ever.
Yet, he has worked so that does not inhibit him as a player.
Murray only had five passes batted down last season. The second quarterback taken, the 6-5 Daniel Jones had 12.
Part of it is that Murray doesn’t allow linemen to get their hands up, his short, quick release gets the ball out before they have a chance to react, and Prisco saw that:
The ball gets out as quick as any passer not named Marino. Some of that could be because of his baseball background, but he also said some of it was the way his father, Kevin, a former college quarterback, taught him to throw it.
If you understand your shortcomings, umm, you can fix them.
The Arizona Cardinals need that quick release, they need the fact that Murray has overcome his height for his whole life to be true one last time.
And maybe it will be what the Arizona Cardinals have needed.