NFL media pundits have connected the Atlanta Falcons to Tennessee Titans signal caller Ryan Tannehill through trade rumors. Falcons head coach Arthur Smith was Tannehill’s offense coordinator for two seasons.
But Bleacher Report’s Matt Holder had a new trade suggestion for the Falcons on Saturday — Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray.
“The Atlanta Falcons have a good roster that’s filled with offensive playmakers and quality defenders,” Holder wrote. “However, Desmond Ridder has been inconsistent at best this season, and that’s a big reason they haven’t been able to pull away in the NFC South standings.
“So it would make sense for the Falcons to upgrade at quarterback with Murray and continue their playoff push.”
There are several obstacles to making a Murray trade to the Falcons a reality. For one, Murray isn’t healthy yet.
Murray suffered a torn ACL in Week 14 of the 2022 season. Although he returned to practice this past week, NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported that the team intends to be cautious with Murray’s return.
The very earliest Murray may play in a game is Week 9 on November 5.
His contract is another obstacle. If the Cardinals trade Murray, they would have $46 million in dead cap space next season.
The contract would be much more favorable for the other team in the trade. His new team would owe Murray his base salary and roster bonus for the 2024 season, which is roughly $38 million according to Spotrac.
A rebuilding team like the Cardinals, though, could be interested in taking the cap hit if it resulted in multiple high draft picks.
However, the question from Atlanta’s standpoint is whether the Falcons are ready to move on from Desmond Ridder. He hasn’t been great this season, throwing for just 6 touchdowns with 6 interceptions in seven games.
But Ridder has led the Falcons to two fourth-quarter comebacks and has recorded a game-winning drive in all four of Atlanta’s victories. Most importantly, he has the Falcons in first place of the NFC South.
While Murray would be an upgrade over Ridder, it would come at a hefty cost. Trading for Murray could cost multiple first-round draft picks.