Kyler Murray called for two false start penalties for fake clap
Kyler Murray’s second preseason game with the Arizona Cardinals did not go well at all on Thursday night. Making matters worse, he was oddly called for false starts twice in the game.
Murray, the No. 1 overall draft pick, went 3/8 for 12 yards as his team lost 33-26 to the Oakland Raiders. Murray did very little while guiding the Cardinals’ offense for four drives (three punts and a safety).
The false starts were surprising because it’s so rare to see a quarterback called for it. Murray was called because he had been clapping to signal to get snaps from his center. The false starts came when he did a fake clap:
According to @PaulCalvisi, Murray is being flagged for the fake clap he was doing. That was drawing the false start.
— Darren Urban (@Cardschatter) August 16, 2019
FOX NFL rules analyst Dean Blandino explained the problem with the fake claps. He says it’s a judgement call by the refs and one they were officiating very closely with Murray.
There is no prohibition against clapping. You just can’t do anything abrupt to try and draw the defense offside. The action has to be smooth and deliberate. They are calling it very tight on him. I didn’t think what he was doing was abrupt.
— Dean Blandino (@DeanBlandino) August 16, 2019
“Apparently I was too abrupt, not smooth enough as far as bringing my hands together,” Murray said after the game. “To me it’s like any other hard count.”
Not only are the claps problematic because of the potential false starts, but it allows the defense to get a good jump on the snap.
At the NFL level, Kliff Kingsbury might need to limit clap snap counts.
On Kyler Murray's sack, whole DL was off the ball before whole OL except C. OTs had no shot vs DEs.
Kyler's bobble made it worse (late to step up), but he liked to stay deep at Oklahoma. Could be an issue pic.twitter.com/eqbvJISnQ0
— David DeChant (@DavidDeChant) August 9, 2019
New Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury is giving Murray lots of freedom to operate the offense, but he may want to re-evaluate whether the clap is something they want to continue.