Moon made the comment to TMZ for a story published Sunday while discussing Murray’s $230 million extension that makes him the second highest-paid player in the NFL by annual salary. When Murray signed the deal last week, a clause in the contract was leaked stating that Murray must complete “at least four (4) hours of independent study each week during each playing season during the term of contact.”
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The clause also prohibits Murray from engaging in distractions such as television and video games while conducting his independent study at the risk of falling out of his contract. Moon, the leading black quarterback who starred on the Houston Oilers and other NFL teams in the ’80s and ’90s, told TMZ that the clause was “embarrassing” and calling back the days “when they wouldn’t let us play.”
“It’s just an unfortunate situation,” Moon said. “It’s an embarrassing situation not only for player Kyler Murray, but it’s embarrassing for the organization to have to deal with this. I think it shows a lack of confidence in the player that you even have to put something in a contract like this.
“It’s also a slap in the face for all the African American quarterbacks. It’s something that we were always accused of the day they didn’t let us play. That we were lazy, that we didn’t study, that we couldn’t be leaders, that we weren’t smart. So it all came out. Those kind of different things are on the surface after we’ve put all that stuff to bed over the years and because of this deal that’s going on between Arizona and Keeler.”
Murray: disrespect and almost a joke
The clause caused an uproar in NFL circles as his response drew criticism from Murray himself.
“I think I can accomplish everything I’ve accomplished in my career and not be a student of the game and not have that passion and not take this seriously, that’s disrespectful and it’s almost a joke,” Murray told reporters last week.
Amid the uproar, the Cardinals removed the clause from the contract on Thursday, four days after it was leaked.
“After seeing the distraction it created, we removed the appendix from the contract,” the Cardinals statement read. “It was clearly seen in ways that were not intended at all.
“Our confidence in Kyler Murray is as high as it has ever been and nothing demonstrates our belief in his ability to lead this team more than the commitment reflected in this decade.”
The leak indicates that the Cardinals have no confidence in Murray’s study habits. Removing the language did not invalidate this perception. Munn believes that Item will continue to follow Murray throughout his career.
“It’s too late,” Moon continued. “The damage is done. He’ll have this every time he makes a mistake in a football match. They’ll say, ‘Look, that’s why it happened because he didn’t study enough. Last week’s movie’ or whatever. It’s a very unfortunate situation for him. And very embarrassing for both sides.