3 Cap Casualties the Cardinals Can Cut to Afford Kyler Murray Extension

Larry Rupp
Three cap casualties the Arizona Cardinals can cut to afford a Kyler Murray contract extension.
Three cap casualties the Arizona Cardinals can cut to afford a Kyler Murray contract extension. / Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

It's been weeks since quarterback Kyler Murray wiped everything regarding the Arizona Cardinals from his social media. Fans were left in the dark until a statement was released by his agent on Monday morning. Murray is happy where he is, but is seeking a contract extension from the team.

Young QBs like Josh Allen and Patrick Mahomes have signed lucrative deals following their third NFL season. Murray is at that point himself and just led the Cardinals to their first playoff berth since 2015. However, Arizona is going to be forced to shed some cap space if an extension does come into place.

Here's a look at three cap casualties the Cardinals can cut to afford an extension for Murray.

Cardinals Cap Casualties

1. Devon Kennard, OLB

Linebacker Devon Kennard was signed to a three-year deal worth $20 million prior to the 2020 season, yet has failed to make a true impact on the team. He played in just 28% of the defensive snaps this past season and didn't post a single sack for the first time since 2015. Arizona has depth at the position and would benefit from cutting ties with Kennard. It would save the team about $4.8 million in cap space. While that may not seem like much, any little bit helps when looking to lock down a franchise quarterback. It would be a step in the right direction.

2. Justin Pugh, OL

Offensive lineman Justin Pugh stepped up for the Cardinals in 2021 and protected Murray in the pocket by allowing 0 sacks across 802 snaps, according to Pro Football Focus. The only problem is that he comes with a $11.8 million cap hit in 2022. Pugh will enter the fall at 31 years old and his best days may be behind him. Finding a replacement through free agency of the NFL Draft may not be as hard as it seems anyways. Letting Pugh loose would allow Arizona to free up $9.8 million in cap space, which would come in handy for Murray's potentially massive signing bonus.

3. DJ Humphries, OL

Yes, DJ Humphries made his first Pro Bowl this past season and played a major role for the Cardinals in both the passing and rushing attack. He still gave up 7 sacks and drew 11 penalties, though. That makes him worth mentioning here given his huge 2022 cap hit. Keeping Humphries on the roster would cost Arizona $19.3 million against the cap, while cutting him would free up $15 million. That is a large chunk of cash that can be used to extend Murray for the long haul. Making this move would show just how much the Cardinals are committed to their QB.

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Larry Rupp is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Larry Rupp also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username phillyfan424. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.