The Arizona Cardinals made one decision at quarterback Monday when they released veteran Colt McCoy.
But they’re still not ready to name a starter. With preseason over and McCoy gone, rookie head coach Jonathan Gannon wasn’t ready to commit to a starting quarterback. Rookie Clayton Tune and veteran Josh Dobbs will continue to compete for the job ahead of Arizona’s season opener against the Washington Commanders on Sept. 10.
“Every spot’s open competition,” Gannon told reporters Monday when asked specifically about Tune and Dobbs. “I think we’ve got a pretty good plan in place, but I want to see them both go through the next two weeks.”
Gannon also believes keeping the decision under wraps as long as possible will give Arizona an advantage against the Commanders.
“I’m not going to name a starter because I think it’s a competitive advantage for us going to Washington,” he said. “But we will know who the starter is.”
Every team but the Cardinals has named a starter
When they’ll know isn’t clear. But time’s running short as the Cardinals remain the last NFL team without a starting quarterback named for the first week of the season. The Texans recently named C.J. Stroud their starter, a decision that was presumed after the first-round rookie worked with Houston’s starting offense throughout training camp and the preseason. What happens in Arizona remains anyone’s guess.
McCoy was the most seasoned healthy quarterback on the roster as regular starter Kyler Murray remains sidelined with an ACL tear sustained last season. He played two seasons in Arizona and started three games last season after Murray was injured. He completed 68.2% of his passes for 780 yards with one touchdown and three interceptions in four total appearances. Gannon cited “the whole body of work” in his decision to release McCoy.
“Just like with every decision, we look at the full body of work,” Gannon said. “Evaluate our guys — production goes into that. Felt like it was the best decision for the team to move forward with the guys in the room to help us win football games.”
Tune is a fifth-round rookie out of Houston. He’s completed 57.6% of his passes for 353 yards with one touchdown and one interception in three preseason appearances.
Dobbs is a fourth-year NFL veteran who made the only two starts of his career for the Tennessee Titans last season in place of an injured Ryan Tannehill. He completed 58.8% of his passes for 411 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions in those starts, losses to the Dallas Cowboys and Jacksonville Jaguars that ultimately knocked the Titans out of playoff contention.
The Cardinals traded a fifth-round pick to the Cleveland Browns last week to acquire Dobbs and a seventh-round pick. He’s yet to play for the Cardinals. He’s worked with Cardinals offensive coordinator Drew Petzing when they were both in Cleveland.
When will Kyler Murray return?
Murray’s return remains up in the air. He remained on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list Monday, passing a deadline that that will keep him sidelined until at least Week 5 against the Chicago Bears. He was on the sideline at practice Monday casually throwing the ball and walking without a knee brace.
Gannon said that Murray was “doing good” and that he’s taking it “one day at a time.”