Rams compliment Kyler Murray ahead of Monday night football

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When it comes to defending quarterbacks, very few can be more difficult than Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray.

Murray’s speed, arm strength, the ability to play with his legs, and the general green light to let the ball fly through any window make him one of the most exciting passers in the NFL.

For defenses, especially a Los Angeles Rams unit that’s home to prominent names like defensive tackle Aaron Donald, cornerback Jalen Ramsey and outside linebacker Von Miller, the puzzle doesn’t get any easier when you try. to figure out how to stop Murray.

Defensive coordinator Raheem Morris said: “Kyler is playing extremely well. I know he missed a few games there and they still managed to execute and do some really good things. But missing Kyler, and his factor that he brings with his legs and ability to stretch the ball on the pitch, is definitely something you can’t discredit.

“I think the guy is playing at a high level. When you play with guys like that you have to rush with great vision and violence. You have to keep him there. You have to make him become a pocket passer. I hope if he becomes a pocket passer you can make a few plays on the ball in your defense system and do that sort of thing. But he’s a great player. We have to go out there and play our best game. “

With Murray’s abilities there is often a catch-22 when trying to plan the game for him. Do you keep him in the pocket with minimal pressure and allow him to throw? Or do you let the dogs run free and risk Murray finding the light of day with nothing but green grass in front of him?

Morris says you need to roll the dice and limit the damage to Murray’s arm.

“You would like to keep it in your pocket,” he said. “When he comes out of the pocket he’s very dangerous. His ability to expand plays and make plays extend all the way down, especially when he comes out of pocket, is unique. But you do. also can not be careless and let it go in the pocket and out of the pocket and do the same kind of games.

“You have to have a great rushing plan, which we will do. I have a lot of confidence in the plan that our (defensive line) coach (Eric) Henderson put together and with (the assistant defensive line coach) Marcus (Dixon) and (assistant linebacker coach) Thad (Bogardus) and all that kind of guy with the ability to rush that we have.

“You have to feel good about it. You have to feel good with these guys, have the success that they’ve had against them in the past – other than the last game we played with them – to bring back some of the these things as well.

“So we’re looking forward to this game as a division game, it’s going to be fun. Monday night football and it’s gonna be awesome.

Donald, one of three players in NFL history to win the NFL Defensive Player of the Year three times, also spoke about Murray and what went wrong for the Rams during from their 37-20 loss to Arizona earlier this season.

In this matchup, Murray completed 24 of 32 passes for 268 yards and two touchdowns without interceptions while gaining 39 rushing yards.

Donald said: “We just (didn’t) play well, but we know what to expect. We know what we have to do to try and bottle it – don’t let it come out of the pocket and expand. games. So we do that, it’s gonna be fine. We just have to find ways to attack him, make him uncomfortable, and shoot him this time.

“He had a good day. He played well. Again, we let him come out of the pocket a few times and extend the plays with his feet. Some play with his arm. So you leave any quarterback do that, they’re going to have a good day. So definitely the type of talent he is, we can’t allow that. “

The first meeting between the two teams took place at the start of the season in Week 4. Now the Cardinals and Rams are battling plenty of runners on the line as the regular season draws to a close.

“I feel like it’s a playoff game so that’s how we have to take it. It’s the state of mind and we know we have to win. We have to win, ”said Donald.

Ramsey echoed a similar sentiment.

“Obviously a division game means a little bit more when you talk about ranking and ranking, or whatever, but we have to take it one game at a time,” Ramsey said.

“I think that’s the message right now that the team resonates with and I think that’s what the guys feel. I also think the guys are trying to focus and lock in because they’ve got us. had the first time we played, and we don’t want that to happen again.

All eyes will be on State Farm Stadium on Monday night, as the Cardinals clinch a playoff berth with a win, while putting the Rams in a three-game deficit in NFC West with just four games to go.

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