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The Arizona Cardinals have called an audible on the controversial study addendum in quarterback Kyler Murray's new contract.
The team has eliminated the mandatory "independent study" clause in Murray's extension, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported Thursday evening.
"After seeing the distraction it created, we removed the addendum from the contract," the Cardinals said in a team statement, obtained by NFL Network's Mike Garafolo and Rapoport. "It was clearly perceived in ways that were never intended. Our confidence in Kyler Murray is as high as it's ever been and nothing demonstrates our belief in his ability to lead this team more than the commitment reflected in this contract."
Following an eventful offseason leading up to Murray's extension, the contract itself has proved to be another cause for consternation this week.
Murray officially signed his $230.5 million extension on Monday that included a stipulation requiring the QB to "complete at least four (4) hours of independent study" during game weeks. Within the now-removed clause, it stipulated that Murray needed to study material provided to him by the team in order to prepare for each upcoming game throughout each season of his contract. It went on to state Murray would not receive credit for the independent study if he was "not personally studying or watching the material while it is being displayed or played" or if the player is involved in activities that could distract his attention (i.e. television, video games or surfing the internet).
Earlier Thursday, Murray conducted an impromptu news conference in which he expressed his dismay with people thinking he could accomplish what he has in his career without being a "student of the game." Murray declined to answer if he was upset by the clause being included, but its removal would certainly seem to indicate he wasn't pleased by its inclusion.
Rapoport reported previously that Cardinals owner Michael Bidwill believed the addendum was a needed addition to the contract, with Rapoport noting Bidwill and the team "wanted some assurances that [Murray is] going to continue to work, continue to perform at the level that is necessary, and the kind of level that deserves that contract."
According to the team, the addendum was perceived in a manner that wasn't intended, and it most certainly caused a stir that was not anticipated, either.
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