Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray is projected to be able to recover from his torn ACL in six to eight months, putting him on track to be ready for the start of the 2023 season, league sources told ESPN.
This is the best-case scenario for Murray, who suffered the injury on the third play of Monday night's loss to the New England Patriots, before being carted off the field and sobbing in the tunnel with the realization that he had suffered a significant injury.
Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury said this past week that Murray likely will undergo surgery sometime after Christmas, once the swelling in his knee goes down.
The injury could have been worse, but doctors believe all the other ligaments in Murray's knee are intact, according to sources.
"There's a really good chance he's ready by Week 1 next year," one source familiar with Murray's injury told ESPN.
The Cardinals are expected to place Murray on the physically unable to perform list to open training camp next summer, and then slowly ramp him up as the preseason goes along, with the realistic goal of being ready for the regular-season opener.
With Murray out for the season, the Cardinals will turn to Colt McCoy, who filled in earlier this season when Murray was nursing a hamstring injury. The Cardinals like and believe in McCoy, who has a strong grasp of the offense and the universal respect of his teammates.
"I think the rapport with teammates is as good as I've ever seen," Kingsbury said Thursday about McCoy. "The respect level they have for him is through the roof and he puts in the work. He's a brilliant football mind, and then he is really good when he gets a chance to play. The ball goes to the right spot [and] it goes out on time. He's earned that right to play in this league as long as he can really operate and stay healthy.
"He could be a coach if he wanted to right now. He'd probably take my job easily. He has that type of knowledge and that type of command in the locker room."