It’s not every season that some of the top quarterbacks drafted in the same class get to meet each other early on in their rookie seasons, with scheduling and roster decisions often making us wait to see these matchups, but that’s not the case this time as the New York Giants take on the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday.
There was plenty of speculation around this year’s NFL Draft about whether Kyle Murray or Daniel Jones would be the higher drafted player – obviously, we know how that turned out now. The Giants drafted Jones, while the Cardinals spent their top pick on Murray despite the question marks around him.
Now, Murray is starting for the Cardinals and has thrown for seven touchdowns this season, while Jones surprised everyone by also claiming the starting job after the Giants began the year with back to back losses. Both players are set to meet on Sunday during their rookie seasons.
But it’s not the offense and Daniel Jones that will have to deal with Murray, at least directly. That job falls to the Giants’ defense, and in the buildup to the game, and multiple players have taken note of the difficulties that may be experienced tying to contain the dual threat quarterback.
“He’s a real elusive guy. He’s quick. He can make plays outside of the pocket down the field. We have to be aware of that and keep him in the pocket. We have to rush him aggressively,” pass rusher Oshane Ximines told NJ Advance Media about Murray.
“You’ve got to be aware of where you are in relation to him,” Ximines added. “So you don’t want to get too high on him or get underneath too quickly which allows him to escape outside. He uses his legs to create even more opportunity for his arm. We have to just get him on the ground.”
According to defensive tackle Dalvin Tomlinson, patience will be one of the keys in handling Murray’s threatening ability on the ground. “The biggest thing is that you have to be disciplined. You have to be gap-disciplined, and you can’t just run around and get unbalanced in your rush because he’ll find a gap and just take off on you and capitalize on it.”
Sunday will show just how disciplined the Giants’ defense really is, after a poor showing in the later stages of the game against the Patriots. Will the Giants be able to bounce back? The answer might just depend on how well they handle the threat of Kyler Murray.