Kyler Murray: 'You either are or you aren't' accurate

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  • By Adam Maya NFL.com
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It's possible that Kyler Murray has faced more questions than any quarterback drafted No. 1 overall before making their NFL debut.

Is he too short? Will he be durable? How much will he stay in the pocket?

We haven't seen a quarterback of Murray's stature taken that high before, not to mention the Arizona Cardinals hiring a former college coach with a losing record and jettisoning their first-round QB from the previous draft, so it makes sense to question the selection.

But the most important one of all as it pertains to Murray's future success might be, is he accurate? If the preseason (and his college experience) is any indication, the answer is yes.

Per NFL Next Gen Stats, 26 of his 36 total attempts were thrown to targets who had a defender within four yards. Murray completed 17 of them, good for 65.3 percent. His overall completion percentage was 63.8. Murray, who also completed 67.4 percent of his throws in college, asserted his accuracy is innate.

"I think a lot of it is God-gifted," he told ESPN. "... As far as being accurate goes, I think you either are or you aren't. I don't think you can really become accurate."

Maybe not overnight. But Murray's precision is the result of a lot of work. He's been playing the position since he was 8 years old, receiving much of his training on footwork and arm motion from his father, Kevin. The senior Murray is a former college QB himself and remains a personal coach in Texas.

His Cardinals teammates have been quick to point out the fruits of his labor with his father.

"Kyler gets a lot of attention from the media and from the outside world just in terms of, obviously, he's very mobile," running back Chase Edmonds said. "Obviously, he's a dynamic quarterback. He can change just the whole style of a team's offense when he scrambles, but I think it overshadows just how accurate he truly is and just how calm he's able to stay under pressure when you look at his footwork when guys are approaching him or how he's so quickly able to just settle back and get an accurate throw going on."

Wide receiver Christian Kirk added: "It makes my job easy. All I got to do is go catch the ball."

Given the Cardinals' Air Raid offense, you know Murray will be throwing it. Arizona offered a vanilla version in the preseason, so it remains to be seen how exactly its attack will manifest in Sunday's opener versus the Detroit Lions.

"I just want him to play his game, cut it loose," Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury said during a Wednesday conference call, per the Detroit Free Press. "We know there's going to be some ups and downs. It's not easy starting Day 1 as a rookie quarterback in this league. We understand that, so I want him to just relax, know he doesn't have to win or lose the game by himself and go out there and do the best that he can."

As it always has, being accurate will make Murray's life easier.

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