What DeAndre Hopkins release means for Kyler Murray: Cardinals could move up to QB after 2023 season?

The Arizona Cardinals look to the future, highlighted with the release by DeAndre Hopkins, leaving the franchise without a #1 wide receiver. 1 for 2023. The Cardinals acquired Hopkins to be the No. 1 wide receiver. soccer.

The early returns were worth the investment, as Hopkins amassed 115 catches for 1,407 yards and six touchdowns in his first year at Arizona. Injuries and a six-game suspension occurred over the past two seasons, as Hopkins had 106 catches for 1,289 yards and 11 touchdowns in 19 games.

Where will DeAndre Hopkins play next season? Go to Sports line to be seen which teams have the best odds to get the perennial Pro Bowler.

Hopkins is still one of the game’s top receivers despite not having a 1,000-yard season since 2020, as the Cardinals were clearly a better team when he was on the field than when he was out. Arizona was 18-17 in the 35 games Hopkins played and 17-14 when Hopkins played with Murray at quarterback. The Cardinals were 5-10 in the 15 games Hopkins didn’t play.

With a new general manager (Monti Ossenfort) and a new head coach (Jonathan Gannon) in the fold, the Cardinals are looking to rebuild the franchise from the mistakes of the previous regime. Part of the restructuring involved switching from Hopkins and hitting a dead cap hit for 2023 so they could start fresh for 2024.

What does this mean for Murray moving forward? Not good for the quarterback who signed a $ 230.5 million contract last summer and is tied with Arizona for at least the next two seasons.

Who is the No. 1 wide receiver? 1?

headshot of the player

With the release of Hopkins, Murray has lost his main focus of the past three years. AJ Green has also retired, which means Murray won’t have another veteran wide receiver at his disposal.

Luckily for the Cardinals, they still have some valuable pass-catchers for Murray. Marquise Brown will be No. 1 in 2023, while Rondale Moore will take over as No. 2. Greg Dortch will get more reps, vying with Zach Pascal and 2023 third round pick Michael Wilson for the third place. Zach Ertz and Trey McBride are also the top two tight ends on the roster.

Arizona looked much better at wide receiver when Hopkins was on the roster. Murray will have to try and win games without his favorite target, but this group is far from the worst in the NFL. There are just a lot of unproven products.

Murray fighting for his job?

headshot of the player

The Cardinals have two first-round picks in the 2024 NFL Draft: their own and the one they acquired from the Houston Texans so Houston can trade up to No. 3 overall and pick Will Anderson Jr. Houston should be better in 2023, but still is projected to be one of the worst teams in the NFL. The Cardinals could take a top-five pick from the Texans if their win total doesn’t improve significantly.

Arizona may just be the worst team in the league and poised for the first overall pick in the draft. USC’s Caleb Williams is expected to enter the 2024 NFL Draft and should be the best quarterback prospect since Trevor Lawrence. If the Cardinals get that No. 1 pick, Murray likely had a bad year and Arizona would look to move forward by restoring the franchise and drafting Williams (getting another franchise milestone in the process with picking Houston).

Arizona probably doesn’t want Murray to succeed at this rate. Hopkins’ release doesn’t give Murray the pass catchers he needs to help the franchise win games.

The numbers with/without Hopkins

Murray was 17-14 in the 31 games Hopkins played, but his splits were significantly better when Hopkins was on the field. Here are Murray’s numbers when Hopkins has played (since Hopkins was traded to the Cardinals in 2020):

Murray with Hopkins





Murray without Hopkins 65.4% 13 4 87.4 3-7

The Cardinals simply don’t win games when Hopkins isn’t on the field, and Murray isn’t as efficient a quarterback throwing the football without him. Murray has just 349 rushing yards and two rushing touchdowns without Hopkins on the field, averaging 6.0 yards per carry. With Hopkins, Murray has 230 carries for 1,271 yards and 17 touchdowns (5.5 yards per carry).

No Hopkins in the fold equals a less productive Murray. Not good for his prospects in 2023.

#DeAndre #Hopkins #release #means #Kyler #Murray #Cardinals #move #season

Leave a Comment