It’s pretty common for penalties and false starts to be the story of football games. But what isn’t common is for one to be called on the quarterback. It’s even less common for it to happen twice in one quarter.
But that is exactly what happened in Kyler Murray’s second preseason start on Thursday.
The Cardinals were sloppy from the beginning as they were called for seven penalties in the first quarter alone, but the No. 1 overall pick in the 2019 draft had a lot to do with that. He was twice called for false starts which hamstrung an already struggling offense.
So what was Murray doing so wrong that resulted in such an odd penalty? Apparently he wasn’t clapping right.
According to ESPN, Murray was called for those two false starts because his claps which signaled the snap for Arizona weren’t fluid enough.
Here’s why Kyler Murray was flagged for two false starts: His clap on those plays was too herky-jerky. He can use a fluid clap but once he starts hesitating, it’s a penalty.
— Josh Weinfuss (@joshweinfuss) August 16, 2019
They really called false start on Kyler Murray lol, not sure I’ve seen a QB called for that out of the shotgun. Kyler is not pleased. pic.twitter.com/zwmRCA2wOV
— Carson Cunningham (@KOCOCarson) August 16, 2019
It’s a less than ideal situation for Murray who has clapped for a snap since his days at Allen High School in Texas. But this form of signal isn’t quite as common in the NFL. Many quarterbacks will still go with a verbal cadence or even the leg lift to signal the center for the snap.
At the same time, it’s something Murray has to figure out because the clap is used in the NFL to signal a snap even if it’s less common. The false starts were bad, but that might have even distracted from the rest of his performance. Murray finished 3 of 8 for 12 yards with two sacks which netted a loss of 10 yards. His final sack came in the form of a safety.
Hard Knocks Ep 3 SPOILER:
LAMARCUS JOYNER WITH THE SAFETY ON KYLER MURRAY 😱
— FanDuel (@FanDuel) August 16, 2019
Murray has all the talent in the world. He has a huge arm and very good speed, but he’ll have to clean up some of that sloppiness going forward.