Cardinals Coach Kliff Kingsbury Calls Spat With Kyler Murray a ‘Gen-Z Thing’

by Suzanne Halliburton
Grant Halverson/Getty Images

Maybe you saw the animated sideline exchange between Arizona coach Kliff Kingsbury and his starting quarterback Kyler Murray. Thursday Night Football cameras caught the heated discussion.

You can say the quarterback versus coach discussion, which may or may not have included at least one F bomb, blew up the NFL section of the internet. Kingsbury, the young Gen Xer, addressed his conversation in his post-game press conference and attributed it to a “Gen Z thing.”

But first, that Kliff Kingsbury-Kyler Murray chat is worth another look.

So what did Kliff Kingsbury have to say about Murray’s brief tirade?

“It was just one of those things on the field. We had a difference of opinion,” Kingsbury told reporters. “Yeah, he said I didn’t look good on TV and acted kind of fiery. So, I don’t know. It’s the Gen-Z thing on TV ‘calm down,’ but I like showing emotion.”

But Kingsbury Was Calm After a 42-34 Win Over Saints

After the game, Kingsbury and Murray could downplay their second-quarter sideline discussion. Wins can be so soothing like that. Plus, on the very next play, Keaontay Ingram scored a touchdown on a two-yard rush. Eno Benjamin’s run was good for the two-point play, pulling the Cardinals into a 14-14 tie with the New Orleans Saints.

From there, Kliff Kingsbury saw his coaching job turn a bit easier. That’s because the Cardinals received two gifts from New Orleans. Arizona cornerback Marco Wilson caught a tipped pass thrown by Andy Dalton and returned it for a 38-yard touchdown. The Cardinals kick to the Saints. Then one minute later, Arizona linebacker Isaiah Simmons intercepted Dalton and zipped to the end zone from 56 yards.

Arizona maintained a healthy, double-digit lead for almost all of the second half. The Saints kicked a field goal with 43 seconds to go in the game to trim the final margin to 42-34.

And yes, Kyler Murray shared this thought about why he told Kliff Kingsbury to chill. The two Texas quarterback legends have known each other long before either joined the NFL. Kingsbury started recruiting Murray, then a star at Allen High School, when Kingsbury worked as the offensive coordinator at Texas A&M and then as the head coach at Texas Tech.

“He’s real animated over there on the sideline sometimes,” Murray told reporters. “It’s . . . ‘Calm down, we’re good. We’re going to make it right.’ We ended up scoring, so that was good, but that’s all I was saying. Just chill out.”

Now back to Kliff Kingsbury, who acknowledged that the Cardinals were working through some stuff as an offense.

“Yeah, I mean, it’s good,” Kingsbury said. “I think we’re working through as an offense where we want to be and what we want to do. And you have competitors that have a level of intensity like that. I think it will keep pushing us forward.”