Captain of Team Murray
- Jul 21, 2002
- Reaction score
- Orange County, CA
The vaunted Air Raid offense turned into the Horizontal Raid last season, and now the supposedly electric duo in Arizona faces a make-or-break season
On the other hand, I’ve still got a healthy dose of skepticism that Kingsbury is the offensive pioneer that the Cardinals thought they were getting when they hired him from the college ranks. Kingsbury needs to get his run game rolling again this season, but more crucially, he’ll have to prove that his signature style of offense can work for a full season. Arizona remained the fastest offense in the league in neutral situations last year, and that’s a plus, but I’m still waiting for Kingsbury to unleash Murray as an aggressive downfield passer in the mold of Patrick Mahomes. Going back to his days at Oklahoma, Murray has always been a pinpoint passer on vertical throws―that was the case last year, when he threw nine touchdowns and zero picks on throws of 20-plus yards.
But Murray threw deep on only 11.5 percent of his passes last year, per PFF, which tied for 22nd among 39 qualifying quarterbacks (that was his deep throw rate in 2019, too). His average depth of target, 8.3 yards, tied for 21st. Kingsbury sure seems to be leaving a lot of meat on the bone in the team’s passing game with such a screen-heavy, horizontally inclined passing game. And he’s likely running out of time to prove he can fix it.
This could be a make-or-break year for Kingsbury in Arizona. He’s got Murray, who brings the accuracy, arm strength, and aggressive mindset to the quarterback position. He’s got Hopkins, Green, and Moore, a trio of receivers who combine to offer speed, size, and the ability to threaten the defense deep. But now Kingsbury needs to prove he can unlock his young quarterback’s potential, get the Cardinals to start the season strong, and this time make sure that, by the end, fans aren’t f*****’ sick of ’em.
This article captures my feelings pretty solidly. I've seen enough of K1 and KK to think that combination can work in the NFL. What I haven't determined is how much did having a lack of players to execute his offense influenced the poor finish or how much did Murray's injury affect the teams performance.
One thing that hasn't been discussed much on this board: What if the defense takes a big step forward but the offense falls somewhere between the beginning of 2020 and the end of 2020? What if the team wins 20-12 slog fests and finishes the year 11-6? Does that inspire confidence and is that sustainable with Keim as the GM? It's a possibility that isn't too far fetched.