Arizona Cardinals Release Veteran QB Colt McCoy As Final Cuts Begin

The Arizona Cardinals have started to announce cuts to the team as they approach the start of their season.

Cardinals head coach Jonathan Gannon has been asked if Colt McCoy would start as quarterback, and several times Gannon said the team wasn’t ready to name starters yet.

On Monday the team began cutting to a 53-man roster by releasing quarterback McCoy.

No formal announcement on who exactly will start the season as quarterback. Now, it all comes down to newcomer Joshua Dobbs and rookie Clayton Tune to start against Week 1 against Washington.

“I won’t name a starter because I think it’s a competitive advantage for us going to Washington,” Gannon said. “We have a plan in place, but I want to see them play football still,” Gannon said of the Dobbs-Tune competition. “We have some work this week and the following week we have some work. So I feel good with that.”

The Cardinals will keep Kyler Murray on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) to start the season, Gannon confirmed.

Also released by the Cardinals on Monday were defensive backs Sean Chandler and Nate Hairston.

Center Pat Elflein was placed on injured reserve, ending his season.

McCoy had been the No. 1 quarterback during the entire offseason and at training camp. While Tune was always given the chance to compete for the starting job, he never usurped McCoy for all the No. 1 snaps. But when the team traded for Dobbs last week — a player they had tried to acquire as a free agent in March — it immediately changed the dynamic of what might happen on the QB depth chart.

McCoy has battled elbow issues through the offseason but other than having a couple of practice days where he worked but didn’t actually throw the ball, he did not miss any practice time. In his appearances in two preseason games, he completed 9-of-12 passes for 42 yards.

The Cardinals must be down to a 53-man roster by 1 p.m. Arizona time on Tuesday. They have a walkthrough on Tuesday and then practice on Wednesday and Thursday.

As for Quarterback Kyler Murray, he remain on the Physically Unable to Perform list to begin the regular season and will have to sit out at least the first four games of the 2023 season.

“I wouldn’t want to go out there and hurt the team, or hurt myself,” Murray said in late July. “The advice I’ve gotten from a lot of people around me is, obviously, to go when you are ready. Don’t feel pressured to come back because of this situation or that situation. I feel when that time comes, I’ll know.”

When it comes to recovering from an ACL injury, it’s different for everybody. “He’s got a plan that’s football-related, and he’s got a plan that is rehab-related,” Gannon said. “Both are important, but obviously the plan that’s most important is his health.”