Justin Murray didn’t win the starting right tackle position, but he nevertheless has continued to impress the Arizona Cardinals, who on Friday agreed to extend the offensive lineman’s contract through 2022.
NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport adds that the deal could max out at $9 million.
Murray played in 14 games with 12 starts at right tackle for Arizona last year after being picked up off waivers a week before the regular season began. Week 1 was his first NFL start, and his progression led to the 6-foot-5, 215-pounder re-signing with the team for 2020 via the exclusive rights free agent tender.
Veteran Kelvin Beachum signed late in the offseason and in training camp won the starting right tackle job over Murray, who moved into a backup guard/tackle role for Arizona.
“He’s a guy that I trust in there as a starter,” Cardinals offensive line coach Sean Kugler said of Murray during training camp. “Extremely impressed by his work ethic and he’s improved even more in this camp.”
The 27-year-old Murray has only played 22 offensive snaps this season, but the Cardinals have used him as an extra blocking tackle in heavy packages while also inserting him as a backup guard. Last week, he subbed in for both right guard J.R. Sweezy and left guard Justin Pugh.
Murray was waived before the 2019 season by the then-Oakland Raiders.
An undrafted player out of Cincinnati in 2016, he also spent time with the Denver Broncos and Cincinnati Bengals and had practice squad stints with the Broncos, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and New Orleans Saints.