The Arizona Cardinals have backtracked on an unusual clause in star quarterback Kyler Murray's new five-year, $230.5 million contract. The clause, first reported in a tweet from NFL analyst Ian Rapoport, called for Murray to carry out four hours of "independent study" per game week. He would be studying "material provided to him by the Club in order to prepare for the Club's next upcoming game." It stated that he wouldn't get credit for the study if he "is not personally studying or watching the material while it is being displayed or played" or if he is distracted by activities like watching TV, NFL.com reports.
Murray—the No.1 draft pick in 2019—made an impromptu media appearance Thursday to reject suggestions that he had taken any shortcuts to success or that there was anything wrong with his study habits or work ethic. "To think that I can accomplish everything that I have accomplished in my career and not be a student of the game and not have that passion ... is disrespectful, and it's almost a joke," said Murray, who won the Heisman Trophy at Oklahoma and was also a first-round MLB pick. Murray added that there are "many different ways" quarterbacks learn the game. "Of course, I watch film by myself. That's a given. That doesn't even need to be said," he said. “But I do enjoy and love the process of watching the game with my guys, the quarterbacks, my coaches."
Murray who is 5-foot-10, said: "I'm not 6-7, 230, and I don't throw the ball 85 yards. I'm already behind the 8-ball and can't afford to take any shortcuts." The Cardinals said later Thursday that the clause had been cut, the AP reports. "After seeing the distraction it created, we removed the addendum from the contract," the team said in a statement. "It was clearly perceived in ways that were never intended. Our confidence in Kyler Murray is as high as it’s ever been and nothing demonstrates our belief in his ability to lead this team more than the commitment reflected in his contract." Dan Wetzel at Yahoo! Sports describes the clause as "rare, if not unheard of"—as well as "ridiculous" and unenforceable, unless the Cardinals were planning to install cameras in Murray's home. (Read more Kyler Murray stories.)