Cardinals Head Coach Kliff Kingsbury – Rams-Cardinals Postgame Quotes – Dec. 29, 2019

(On how close to the game they were until they were sure that Cardinals QB Kyler Murray was going to play)

“We weren’t sure. He worked out prior to the game and felt it a little bit, but he wanted to play. I thought it was his best game by far, considering he was playing at whatever percent he was playing. To be able to kind of go on the road and still do his thing and keep routine in it and make a bunch of plays, that’s the most proud I’ve been all season.”

 

(On what happened to Murrays wrist in the fourth quarter)

“He hit the funny bone. He got hit late and it hit his funny bone, so he couldn’t feel his hand, but then he came back in.”

 

(On if Murray thought the turnovers were due to his injury)

“He would never make an excuse. Some of those throws that he doesn’t miss like that, sailed on him a little bit. When you’re not 100 percent with your lower half, that’s going to happen. I thought for the most part, like I said, he battled his tail off and gave us a chance to win.”

 

(On how he would evaluate the 2019 season)

“A work in progress.”

 

(On if there is any disappointment from Cardinals LB Chandler Jones)

“No, not at all. I knew they’d have a plan. (Head Coach) Sean (McVay) and his offensive staff, they do a great job. They weren’t going to let him wreck the game, but he still had a tackle-for-loss, deflected three or four balls. He made his impact like he has the entire year. They had a great scheme to try to not allow him to get home.”

 

(On what the experience was like for him as a first-year head coach and having a rookie quarterback)

“(It was) a learning experience the entire year. I learned something new everyday about the league and about him (Murray) and about our players. Like I said, it’s a work in progress. The team played their ass off the entire year. Effort was great, quarterback grew up, so there was definitely some progress made.”

 

(On what was said when him and Murray shared a moment during the game)

“I’ll just keep that between us. Like I said, I was most proud of this game, more so than any other, because he wasn’t 100% and he stayed in there and he battled his tail off on the road against a very good team. Teammates see that, the organization sees that and it goes a long way in the offseason.”

 

(On Murray’s wrist injury)

“Not bad. It was a deal where if he strained it more, he wouldn’t have gone. He felt it, but really, you saw, he didn’t try to take off. We didn’t run him at all, but he did a nice job of not kicking it into fifth gear.”

 

(On TE Dan Arnold)

“I didn’t know who he was when he got there, obviously. He’s giving us a lot more. Once you see him run routes and start moving around, he’s got a unique skillset as a wide receiver. Forgot he was still learning our system, he made some big plays for us down the stretch.”

 

(On if he likes playing these types of games when the season is almost over and there is nothing at stake)

“It wasn’t at all. This group, we’ve been out of it for a while and then played some of our best football during that stretch. It’s a professional group, great leadership, we’ve got a young quarterback and they know it’s a process. All these reps have been invaluable for him.”

 

(On RB Kenyan Drake seeming like he was part of the game plan while being on the sidelines)

“No, ‘KD’ (RB Kenyan Drake) is playing really well so we wanted to go with him, give him a whole game and that’s what we did.”

 

(On RB David Johnson returning to the team)

“Yeah, that’s a postseason discussion will get to once we have a chance to sit back and talk with personnel and (Cardinals General Manager) Steve (Keim) and all of those guys.”

 

(On if poor numbers hurt Murray’s confidence)

“No, not at all because he was going to the right place he just sailed the ball. Like I said, your body gets out of whack and things like that happen. It’s the best game he’s played all season under the circumstance and particularly how they dominated us the last time. It was not competitive. He came out here and give us a chance to win today.”

 

(On if the fumbles throughout the game were frustrating)

“Yeah it was. The one ‘KD’ – he’s a great player – he just took his eyes off the ball. The other one, we are trying to check the play. We are plus-50 then we turn it over three times plus-50, that’s unfortunate. You can’t expect to beat the Los Angeles Rams doing stuff like that.”

 

(On what the next few weeks will look like)

“It will be a little bit of down time and then getting ready for the free agency and the draft.”

 

(On what ways they’re a better football team now than they were in September)

“Just understanding the system. Understanding what we are about. We learned how to practice, how best to fit our team. I think between ‘VJ’ (Defensive Coordinator Vance Joseph) and myself, (Assistant Head Coach/Special Teams Coordinator) Coach (Jeff) Rogers, it’s been a work in progress like I’ve said. We got it this last month and really started feeling good about the process in place.”

 

(On the long pass to WR Damiere Byrd and if it was the same as the one that he was flagged for pass interference on)

“It was. Kyler checked one of them and one of them we said, ‘Hey, he ran by him, let’s do it again.’ We had some tough calls out there. I don’t know what the penalty yards were, but it seemed to be pretty lopsided today. I thought our guys did a good job of overcoming that.”

 

(On seeing something that made him want to keep looking to WR Damiere Byrd)  

“We felt that we had a good match-up. (WR) Damiere (Byrd) was playing fast and we felt that he could get a step on that guy.”

 

(On possibly adding new payers to complete their roster)

“I thought we had a solid roster this year. We were in a bunch of games, a bunch of one score games. We had our opportunities had we not turned the ball over. I think we are 30th in redzone-touchdown efficiency. Those are huge things. Get off the field on defense a few more times on third down. You’re always looking to improve, but I liked our roster this year. The guys have played their tails off.”

 

(On his confidence level going into 2020)

“We just have to build off of it. I think some of our best efforts were late in the season. Everybody feels more comfortable in the systems and keeping that consistent going into year two, has a chance to set you in on the right path. But, we have a lot of work to do.”