Kyler Murray emerged as one of the NFL’s best midfielders in only his second year in the NFL, taking the Arizona Cardinals to new heights as the franchise is on the cusp of its post-season debut in five years. Murray has already put together an impressive league biography, becoming the first player in NFL history with 6,000 yards passing and 1,100 yards in the first 25 games of his career and he is only one of three midfielders in NFL history with 6,000 yards, 30 touchdowns He passes and 10 runs touchdowns in his first two NFL seasons.
Murray completed 68.2% of his passes and threw 2,814 yards with 19 touchdowns to nine interceptions per season (Rating 95.9). He also rushed 650 yards and 10 touchdowns, leading the league at 6.7 yards per load. The Cardinals Quarterback is within walking distance of becoming the first player in NFL history with 4,000 lane yards and 1,000 yards in a single season.
While Murray is impressive on the court, he leaves his mark on him. NFL’s “My Cause, My Cleats” campaign will take place during weeks 13 and 14 of this season, raising more than 1,000 players’ awareness of nonprofits and issues on the field – while highlighting efforts to help make a difference in communities across the country.
Murray chose the “Call of Duty: Endowment” campaign this year, which helps veterans secure high-quality jobs after their military service. The Endowment provides funds directly to top organizations in the US and UK helping veterans successfully transition into the civilian workforce. Murray, also known as an avid gamer, chose “The Endowment” to combine his love for the “Call of Duty” video game series with his support for veterans in need this holiday season. The cleats that Murray wears in Week 13 against the Los Angeles Rams team will be in-game and auctioned to raise money for “Call Of Duty: Endowment.”
In an interview with CBSSports.com, Murray discussed the reasons behind this year’s “My Cause, My Cleats” campaign, his assessment of the 2020 season, and his love for “Call of Duty” and video games in general.
I chose “Call of Duty: Endowment” for the “My Cause, My Cleats” campaign this year. What is the factor in this decision?
Murray: It is close to my heart, close to my mother’s heart. Her father, he served in the Army and Navy – I never got to meet him – but being in the family, she says, me and he are both. That was the initial cause, but I play Call of Duty every day and when I discovered the stop order – it made me even more into the game.
I got to see a preview of your stalls. What is the reason behind color design?
Murray: All this has to do with my grandfather. I wanted to be special to my mom, that’s the whole deal. I never got to meet him, but I know the type of guy that was relying on how my mother described him. I wanted her to design the cleats because she is my best friend. It was special for me to allow her to design the cleats. I didn’t want to place any restrictions on them. I can’t wait to see the cleats and put them on the field.
What do you think is the biggest improvement you’ve made from your freshman year to this year?
Murray: I just think it’s a natural ripeness. I think everyone is expecting a big jump from year 1 to year 2. It’s a reshuffle at every level, from high school to college, from college to the NFL. Everyone must make these adjustments, and some people make these adjustments faster than others. I think everyone got to see what I did throughout the year.
We are in the midst of the season and every match is important to try and participate in the qualifiers. We have to be better and we have to find a way to win these matches.
How did you cope with the defenses trying to keep you from hitting them to the ground?
Murray: Being able to run is an added advantage. You don’t have to run for us to win. Obviously, the defenses will choose to take me out of the runner game – but that’s just one person less they have on the charts for my back court. I have great confidence in my back and attack line, so I personally don’t have to adapt. If the defenses want to stop me from running the ball, I’m fine to hand the ball.
What are some parts of your game that you feel you can improve?
Murray: I don’t want to single out any particular part of my game. I can get better at everything. We can be better in everything. I try to be the best, so I don’t place limits on my game.
For the cardinals to conduct the playoffs this year, it’s a very big deal for Phoenix and Arizona
Murray: This is the expectation. The talent that we have, the guys that we have here. I think if we haven’t had the qualifiers, that is a huge disappointment – at least in my view. I expect to do the qualifiers.
How have the virtual meetings changed for you guys, compared to the regular routine Monday through Tuesday?
Murray: We are used to that. I think we’re good at that. It takes a lot of accountability, responsibility, and not being outside to do things that don’t help the team. As you can see all over the league, players are catching COVID-19 and things like that, so I think our organization has done a great job with the protocols, making a lot of things virtual. It’s little things like fast food and some things like that, but there are also some things that we really can’t control.
You mentioned that you are a big player in “Call Of Duty”. Are you still playing the game during the year or is this something just not right for you?
Murray: (Laughs) Oh I play during the season when I have time! It’s a daily occasion during the holiday season, without a doubt.
Do you have a favorite “Call Of Duty” game that you love to play?
Murray: I’ve been playing since I was a little kid so that’s tough. Modern Warfare II might be my favorite, but I love to play WarZone. My buddies and I love playing WarZone a lot. Obviously, I was locked in football.
With the spread of COVID-19, we shut down the NFL on Mondays and Tuesdays. There are a lot of protocol limitations so we have to do things by default. There is more time at home, more than usual. Whenever I get the chance, the men and I jump in and play two games.
Interested in showing off how awesome you are in “Call of Duty?”
Murray: (Laughs) I always tell people that Call of Duty is about actors. I played rounds and game battles all the time as a kid, but stopped playing for some time. I recently got back to playing WarZone and wasn’t very good at first, and now I’m very good at it. I don’t want to show off much, but I love me more than a lot of people. Let’s put it this way.
Playing video games – for me at least – it’s a good way to de-stress when you write all the time. How do video games help you in your NFL midfield career?
Murray: I think it all depends. Cognitive skills training in video games is something you can do on and off the field. it’s hard to explain. You must have real cognitive skills to be good at video games. You have to be ahead of seeing things.
I’ve been playing it all my life, so it’s just a part of me. this is what I do. I tell people all the time if I don’t play sports I probably am a player.
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