When the Cardinals traded for receiver Marquise Brown during the draft, word had not yet emerged that DeAndre Hopkins would begin the 2022 season with a six-game suspension.
But Hopkins’ absence early on means it’s even more critical that Brown gets off to a hot start with his new team.
Fortunately for Arizona, Brown already has some built-in chemistry with his former college teammate, quarterback Kyler Murray. And the Cardinals run a similar system to what Brown and Murray played at Oklahoma.
Head coach Kliff Kingsbury said recently that those factors give Brown a leg up on getting integrated into the Cardinals’ system.
“I’d say, comparatively speaking, if you’re talking about a guy who didn’t know the quarterback or didn’t play in a similar system and didn’t get to work out with him and hear the calls, see the signals, I would say he’s way ahead of the curve when it comes to that,” Kingsbury said, via Josh Weinfuss of ESPN.
Because Brown was in a completely different offense with the Ravens, there are some significant adjustments the receiver has to make now that he’s in the desert. But Kingsbury doesn’t seem to think it will be too difficult for Brown to do so.
“I think it’s similar to what he played in at OU,” Kingsbury said. “Obviously, position-wise, no-huddle type stuff, signal-based. But he’s been in Baltimore for a while now, and so it’s just readjusting to that, but I think he feels comfortable in what we’re doing.”
Brown had 91 receptions for 1,008 yards with six touchdowns in 2021. No Cardinals receiver had over 1,000 yards last season. Now with the Jaguars, Christian Kirk was the closest with 982 yards on 77 receptions.