Murray shows improvement; still winless after loss to Ravens
BALTIMORE (AP) — Playing for the Ravens last season, Arizona Cardinals linebacker Terrell Suggs had an up-close view of rookie quarterback Lamar Jackson’s on-the-job training.
It’s a difficult task to play such an important position one year out of college, but Jackson persevered and took Baltimore to the playoffs.
Suggs sees some of the same traits in Cardinals rookie Kyler Murray that Jackson flashed last season.
“Both of them are going through the NFL quarterback process,” Suggs said after Arizona’s 23-17 loss to Baltimore on Sunday. “There is no shortcut. Lamar is going pretty well, and Kyler is off to a good start.”
Murray, the 2018 Heisman Trophy winner, threw for 308 yards in his debut against Detroit last week. He erased an 18-point, fourth-quarter deficit to salvage a tie, and for an encore threw for 349 yards against Baltimore.
Yet, he’s still in search of his first NFL win.
“Every week is going to be a learning experience for the rookie quarterback,” coach Kliff Kingsbury said. “First start on the road ... He kept us in the game with a bunch of plays.”
Jackson, on the other hand, has guided Baltimore to a 2-0 start. In his favor: One valuable year of NFL experience.
“Kyler Murray is an offensive threat,” said Arizona receiver Michael Crabtree, who like Suggs played with Baltimore last year. “This is his second game in the NFL, this is Lamar’s second year. It’s hard to compare them.”
Despite joining Cam Newton as the only NFL quarterbacks to throw for 300 yards in each of their first two games, Murray lamented not being able to finish off drives and indicated that settling for field goals instead of touchdowns left an unpleasant taste in his mouth.
Murray drove the Cardinals to the Baltimore 3-yard line in the first quarter and to the 4 in the second quarter. Had Arizona converted a touchdown on either possession, the game might have played out differently.
“We were able to move the ball pretty well,” Murray said. “But we’ve got to start finishing drives. We had too many field goals. Moving forward, we can’t do that.”
Even the 300-yard game and being alongside Newton in the record books didn’t seem to impress the rookie, who was drafted No. 1 overall out of Oklahoma after ditching a promising baseball career.
“That’s really cool, but I wish we could have won the game,” Murray said.
Suggs, meanwhile, was limited to three tackles and no sacks in his emotional return to the city where he played 16 years before opting to play Year 17 with his hometown team.
“It was bittersweet,” he said. “It was good to be back and great to play in the stadium where I played most of my career. I really wanted to win.”
Before and after the game, there were hugs aplenty between the Ravens’ career sack leader and his former teammates.
“I wanted to come in here and make some big plays, and I wanted to win,” Suggs said. “But they’re a tough team.”