Cardinals Head Coach Kliff Kingsbury – Media Availability – October 3, 2021

Cardinals Head Coach Kliff Kingsbury – Media Availability – October 3, 2021


(On if there is any excitement or relief in breaking the eight-game losing streak against the Rams)

“No, that was really what we tried to avoid all week. We just wanted to get a week better. We liked how we had progressed throughout the season. I thought we had our best week of practice and so the mantra was just, ‘hey, let’s get a week better. We don’t have to play outside of ourselves or try to do something spectacular. We get a week better. We’ll be in good shape.’”


(On the offense and defense)

“Yeah, I thought both fronts of ours really played physical and set the tone. Defensive line – we knew we had to get in his face. He’s such a great player, (Rams QB Matthew) Stafford, and try to disrupt the timing. They still had some big time plays, but I thought we did just enough to create some turnovers and really turn the tide. And then our offensive line – (OL) Max Garcia stepping in, (OL) Josh Jones sliding to tackle which he hadn’t played much. To rush for over 200 yards in an NFL game, that’s a big, big time accomplishment.”


(On what kind of statement he believed the Cardinals made)

“Yeah, not a statement. Like I said, we wanted to get a week better. Division game – we know those are important and I think we got better. We’ve got to continue to play better and next week we got San Fran, who essentially knocked us out of the playoffs last year. So, we’ve got to continue to play physical football and clean some stuff up.”


(On how he feels after this win)

“I mean, anytime you win an NFL game, you’re excited. There’s no doubt. It’s hard to get it done. So, you put in a lot of work throughout the week and then that’s kind of the time to enjoy it and it’s a celebration for all of us. That’s how we try to try to treat it that way. Our guys had great juice, got some great veteran leaders that are really fun to be around.”


(On QB Kyler Murray’s decision to throw versus run)

“Yeah, that was big time. He continues to impress me with that – knowing when to take off and when the party’s over and throw it away, and then knowing where his outlets are and his shutdowns. Some big time third downs. We were off on third down last week. He came back and was really dynamic on third down with his feet and his arm.”


(On working on that skill with Murray since he got to Arizona)

“No doubt and he’s worked really hard at it. (Cardinals General Manager) Steve’s (Keim) done a tremendous job in personnel bringing in pieces around him. Y’all just talked to (OL) Rodney Hudson. I cannot tell you how valuable he’s been changing the dynamic in that room and whatever pieces we roll through there. He gets them calmed down and he gets them lined up and playing at a high level. Collectively, we’re just progressing as an offense and we’ve got a long way to go still, but it was a good step in the right direction.”


(On the growing chemistry of Murray and WR A.J. Green)

“I truly believe (WR) A.J. (Green), the first couple of weeks, was still adjusting to how we play and not huddling. It’s a lot until you’ve really done it. We didn’t play or start as much in preseason. Now, I feel like he’s acclimated to it, the game slowing down for him. He’s not thinking as much and they had a great rapport in camp. Now, you’re starting to see it come through on Sundays.”

(On where the offensive is at the moment and where it can go)

“We just got to try and keep getting better. We know it’s a long season. Defenses continue to evolve and give us different looks. And the biggest thing we’re doing is protecting the football. We won the turnover in most of our games and that was a huge emphasis going in the season. So, if we can do that with some of the dynamic playmakers we have just and not turn it over, we feel like eventually we’re going to have some breakthroughs and make some big plays.”


(On if he allows himself to enjoy the win when he’s away from home)

“Not so much (laugher). I’ll watch Ted Lasso tonight and go to bed. That’s about it.


(On if he’s learned anything from Ted Lasso)

“Yeah, there’s some real parallels between Ted Lasso and myself, like the epic YouTube dance video. Y’all were at my press conference, it was essentially the same press conference as Ted Lasso had whenever it’s like, ‘is this some kind of a joke?’ (laughter). And then he’s weirdly positive all the time, so we’ll take it. But yeah, I like the show.”


(On if there will be a clearer picture of the division over the next eight days)

This division, you see it week in and week out. I mean, anybody can beat anybody, and we know that. The talent level is tremendous. The quarterback play is tremendous and so as it progresses, as health changes, things like that, you just never know with the NFC West. It’s such a tough league.”


(On if there is a breakthrough that he’s looking for)

“I think just consistency. We’re still going three and out too many times, and that’s big the way we play – no huddle – you can’t do that and put your defense right back in the field. A lot of it is play calling. I got to be smart with what I’m calling, but I think just consistently drive in, drive out, making the routine play.”


(On if he has bragging rights of Rams Head Coach Sean McVay now)

“No. I mean, he’s still beat me a lot more than I beat him. He’s a tremendous coach. One of the best coaches I’ve ever seen or been around, and he’ll have that team ready to roll.”


(On having success against the Rams defense)

“It’s huge. They got to pick their poison when you’re running it like that. (Run Game Coordinator/Offensive Line) Coach (Sean) Kugler had a tremendous plan particularly plugging in those two offensive lineman and still rolling like he did. That set the tone for the entire game.”


(On how long it takes to transition and get into a routine)

“I think the first year you’re trying to figure out the process and what works, what doesn’t work. Second year, you can throw out what didn’t work and really improve upon what you think you got going for you. And then you just try to continue to add the right pieces and go from there. But I would say after year one, I felt pretty good about our process. We didn’t finish last year like we needed to, but I like how we built it so far and we just got to keep getting better.”