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Cardinals want Kyler Murray to take step forward in leadership, maturity

Kyler Murray made headlines this week by scrubbing any references to the Arizona Cardinals from his Instagram account, leading many in football, and in the Cardinals organization, to wonder what was up with the former No. 1 overall pick.

The Cardinals have not had an extensive conversation with Murray since their end-of-season meetings, NFL Network's Mike Garafolo reported Sunday, but there are a few things they'd like to get across to the star quarterback.

"I do know they're looking for Murray to take a step forward in a number of areas," Garafolo reported on NFL GameDay Morning. "We're talking about maturity, body language on the sideline, having a bigger voice with his teammates, and leadership."

Garafolo added that several members of the club were not pleased that Murray did not finish out Arizona's Super Wild Card Weekend defeat to the Los Angeles Rams, in which Murray threw two picks and the Cardinals lost by 23 points. Murray was not on the field for the final two snaps of the game (two Eno Benjamin runs), ceding quarterback snaps to backup Colt McCoy.

In a statement on Sunday responding to earlier reports describing a potentially frayed relationship with Murray, the Cardinals emphasized their "high regard" for the former No. 1 pick.

"Nothing has changed regarding our opinion and high regard for Kyler Murray," Arizona said in a statement obtained by NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport. "We as a team and Kyler individually have improved each year he's been in the league. We are excited to continue that improvement in 2022 and are excited that Kyler Murray is the quarterback leading us."

Murray, the top overall selection in the 2019 NFL Draft, is up for a contract extension this spring.

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