End a week where the Cardinals unnecessarily called a quarterback Kyler Murraywork ethic is in question, his college coach defended the Heisman winner based on his time in Oklahoma.
Riley, speaking at a press conference in his new capacity as USC head coach, said Murray’s work ethic “was a big issue,” via Greg Beecham of the Associated Press.
“I was very concerned when he was in OU that he was going to burn himselfRiley added. “I don’t know why the item was there, but having had it for three years, I never got excited. His work ethic is something I never question.”
Nobody knows exactly why this clause was added to Murray’s contract. (He was presumably removed.) As explained earlier, the Cardinals were concerned that Murray hadn’t worked hard enough in the past, or that with a second giant contract, he would stop working so hard. It’s also possible that owner Michael Bidwill just wanted to play for power to remind Murray that despite his salary, Bidwill is still boss.
Be that as it may, it was a kind of unforced mistake that, at best, would distract attention for a week, and at worst, cause irreparable damage to the relationship. Time will tell which bucket the Cardinals’ mistake will fall into.