Kyler Murray’s new contract has a homework clause

NFC Wild Card Playoffs - Arizona Cardinals v Los Angeles Rams
Getty Images

The Kyler Murray contract has become official. And it officially contains a term that one source with extensive knowledge of player contracts has deemed to be unprecedented.

The deal requires that Murray engage in at least four hours of “Independent Study” during each week of the season, from the Monday after training camp ends through the last game on the schedule, including any postseason games.

The contract defines “Independent Study” to include the study of “the material provided to him by the Club in order to prepare for the Club’s next upcoming game, including without limitation any such material provided via an iPad or other electronic device.” Time spent in mandatory meetings doesn’t count.

The contract specifically includes this sentence: “Player shall not receive any credit for Independent Study with respect to any time periods during which any material is displayed or played on an iPad or electronic device if (a) Player is not personally studying or watching the material while it is being displayed or played or (b) Player is engaged in any other activity that may distract his attention (for example, watching television, playing video games or browsing the internet) while such material is being displayed or played.”

A breach of this term counts as a default under the contract, which would jeopardize his guaranteed money.

It’s unclear how any of this will be enforced by the Cardinals, unless there’s a way to remotely monitor active interaction and engagement of the iPad. (Microsoft, which gives the league a ton of money for an exclusive Surface sponsorship deal, may not appreciate the use of the name of the Apple tablet.) The mere fact that the team reduced the term to writing suggests that the team has concerns about whether and to what extent Murray does sufficient homework.

He wouldn’t be the first player to rely excessively on natural skills, and to give short shrift to studying the playbook, the game plan, and film. He is perhaps the first, if not one of the only, to have a term like this in his contract.

Bottom line: It wouldn’t be there unless the team thought there was a reason for it.

48 responses to “Kyler Murray’s new contract has a homework clause

  1. Makes his contract look even more suspect if his work ethic is already in question. In any case, it’s clear they’d like to see him improvising less and game planning more.

  2. Sounds like the Cardinals don’t think Kyler put in the study time necessary to make himself and the team better.

  3. The fact that they had to add this clause is concerning. And they think Kyler is worth that knowing they had to add the clause? Even more concerning!

  4. As florio has stated, no one was beating down the cards doors to trade fo him.

  5. For that amount of money I’d study quantum physics everyday if they asked

  6. Brandon Beane once said about josh, that he didn’t know he’d be this good but knew Allen would turn over every stone to get better. For as good as kyler and lamar are, their teams don’t seem too excited to give them money. With where QB contracts are going, be careful who you invest in.

  7. Honestly sad and hilarious at the same time. A grown man earning 100s of millions of dollars and his new contract treats him like an eighth grader that won’t stop playing video games and do his homework….

  8. Wow, what a telling clause. He has to have it written in his contract to, you know, do his job and study film/playbook? Now there’s a team leader for you.

  9. I wonder if Peyton Manning spent four hours a week studying the playbook…

  10. Someone who is already a student of the game doesn’t need a clause like that in their contract.

  11. Honestly several teams could have used such a clause starting with the Packers with Brett Favre who didn’t know what a nickel defense was several years into his stay in Green Bay.

  12. Saw that movie. Study hall monitor slides off Tim Allen’s roof and he has to take over a roomful or unruly kids. Good stuff.

  13. Can you imagine a team having to pay Brady, Brees,Peyton, Montana, Young or Marino to study? Working at the art and craft of being an NFL QB should be a given. But then Murray can run really, really fast.

  14. This is going to blow up so bad. Go look at his stats when Hopkins is not playing versus when he is playing. Going to end badly for a lot of people

  15. It’s very hard to win in the NFL with a QB who isn’t serious about football. That clause implies that the Cards don’t think Kyler approaches his job in a professional manner. QBs who don’t prepare look a lot like Kyler looked in the playoffs last year.

  16. I would be terrified about giving a player a huge long term contract if there was a real risk they would quit trying as hard.
    A QB who doesn’t study throws an extra pick here and there, and completes a couple fewer passes.
    I have a bad feeling about this.

    If he is truly motivated he can be a good QB, lets see what happens.

  17. Kyler,

    Get what you can out of this contract then go to Oakland (or wherever) in 4 years to play baseball for the A’s (or whatever).

  18. You can put a motivation clause in the contract, but you can’t put motivation in the player.

  19. Every year his completion and quarterbacking rate has gone up . He had a QBR of 100, threw for nearly 3800 at 69 percent in 14 games with 8 yards per completion. If he wasn’t fully immersed in the offense and put up those numbers, it might be troublesome for the rest of the league if he has full command of it in year four.

  20. How does AZ plan on verifying if their QB is doing his homework? Disaster in the making.

  21. Obviously the Cardinals don’t love Murray. But what choice did they have? He’s still In the top half of QBs, so there wasn’t really any other alternative.

  22. If you’re paying that kind of money and you feel the need to put that clause in the contract I think they’re in a lot of trouble.

  23. I give it 2 seasons before this guy is removing stuff from Twitter and threatening to play baseball again.

  24. This is actually smart by the team, Vick said when he played for Atlanta he never watched film. He said he’d take the dvd and throw it into his back seat when he got to his car. When he got to Philly they made him study film. If the technology existed to monitor his interactions as it does now, I’m sure he would have had it in his contract as well.

  25. Cardinals just confirming what we all knew last year that kyler is NOT a team leader and not someone you should break the bank for. But then they did anyway. Cardinals blew their chance to trade him for 3 first round picks.

  26. Is this the first ever instance of a JaMarcus Russell clause in an NFL contract?

  27. Panthers should immedaitely amend Baker Mayfield’s to reflect the same. He doesnt know where everyone is on the field after his 1st read is taken away. Must be an Oklahoma thing. No wonder they never win big games.

  28. I’ll bet Murray and his agent are pretty pissed this got leaked. Wonder who in the organization leaked it?

  29. This is not a good development if you think this is the long term guy. Wow.

  30. Because of that unique clause, I’m really surprised that Murray isn’t calling the contract ‘racist’ & holding out…but then again, he probably didn’t read it…because, you know, reading hurts. He may fire his agent now that he knows about it!!

  31. So Murray is video game addic and Arizona has to try and keep the kids head in the game. Houston we have a problem.
    NFL, what a joke.

  32. As much as everyone is ready jump all over Kyler and his study habits….. I’d trade Danny “Pennies” and his Duke Pre-Draft “QB Savant” staus for Kyler in a NEW YORK Second!!!

  33. He is arrogant and does not care about football. He made that clear last year in his interview and when he walked off of the field before the game was over that he played like crap in instead of finishing along side his team mates. He has no heart. This contract is a big mistake. They will never when big with him now they are stuck.

  34. Seems foolish to make this kind of commitment to any player, let alone a QB who isn’t willing to put in the extra time. QB’s, especially the ones getting paid like he is, are expected to lead by example and set the standard for everyone on the team. The ones who want to be great don’t have to be told to study, which makes a person wonder if he won’t follow the lead of other players who check out once they get paid. It also makes you wonder wth the Cardinals front office was thinking.

  35. Kids next time your parents say do your homework… just reply why I can still get someone to pay me $40 million a year when I didn’t , I’ll just sign a page saying I will. This is embarrassing for player and team

  36. billshistorian says:
    July 25, 2022 at 4:43 pm
    Brandon Beane once said about josh, that he didn’t know he’d be this good but knew Allen would turn over every stone to get better. For as good as kyler and lamar are, their teams don’t seem too excited to give them money. With where QB contracts are going, be careful who you invest in.

    Ravens have been trying to pay Lamar Jackson since last year. I don’t know why you lumped him in with Kyler.

  37. See Cleveland, you should have kept Baker and put a “read your playbook and don’t throw game losing interceptions or run purposely into defenders to cause injury” clause in his contract like Kyler got. Sounds much smarter than paying him that money when he actually earns it with consistent play. Earning a contract is just silly talk.

  38. > In any case, it’s clear they’d like to see him improvising less and game planning more.

    Agreed, and keep in mind these things are not mutually exclusive.

    I think improvisation which is informed based on knowing the defensive scheme and player tendencies makes improvisation even more effective. E.g. if I’m scrambling and pump fake, their safety has a tendency to bite hard, etc.

  39. Hmmmm…why would the Cardinals do everything in their power to make it work with Kyler Murray.

    Perhaps there is this list: Matt Leinart, Derek Anderson, John Skelton, Max Hall, Kevin Kolb, Ryan Lindley, Brian Hoyer, Drew Stanton, Blaine Gabbert, Josh Rosen.

    The Cardinals know what it is like when one does NOT have THE GUY at quarterback. Kyler Murray certainly isn’t perfect. He is small and apparently he does not like to watch film. Concerning? Absolutely. Still, if he can be motivated then one cannot blame the Cardinals for not wanting to go back to the drawing board and attempting to find a franchise quarterback. They simply do NOT grow on trees.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.