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NFL News and Notes for Friday, December 16th, 2022

As we enter Week 15, teams around the NFL are jockeying for playoff positioning, with a few interesting races still to be decided. One of the most interesting divisions is the NFC East, where all four teams would get in the playoffs if the season ended after Week 14.

Still, with so much riding on each game, let’s take a look at some of the biggest stories from around the league, both on and off the field.

Murray Out With Torn ACL

After signing a five-year extension worth $230.5 million in the offseason, Arizona Cardinals’ quarterback Kyler Murray has suffered a season-ending injury that may hamper his availability for next year as well.

In last week’s game against the New England Patriots, Murray had to leave the game in the first quarter after suffering a non-contact injury. MRIs confirmed that Murray tore his ACL during the play, and his season is over.

The 25-year-old played in 11 games this season, throwing for 2,368 yards, 14 touchdowns, and seven interceptions. He also rushed for 418 yards and another three scores.

Still, Arizona has struggled mightily this year as they are just 4-9 overall, good for third in the NFC West.

Having been taken with the top overall pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, Murray has provided Cardinals’ fans with excitement and frustrations. Despite his talents, Murray was having a subpar year and clashed with head coach Kliff Kingsbury.

Now, the Cardinals will turn to Colt McCoy to finish out the season and will look to regroup heading into 2023, where they hope that Murray can be ready towards the beginning of next season.

Purdy Helps 49ers Clinch

With the San Francisco 49ers’ 21-13 win on Thursday night, they have officially clinched the NFC West. Sitting with a 10-4 record, they have had to look to an unexpected source for their success.

After dealing with injuries to quarterbacks Trey Lance and Jimmy Garoppolo, the 49ers have turned to Brock Purdy under center. “Mr. Irrelevant” has now led the team to two straight victories in the matter of just a handful of days and three in a row overall.

Against the Seahawks, Purdy threw for 217 yards and two touchdowns (both to tight end George Kittle). On the ground, Christian McCaffrey had a nice game, rushing for 108 yards and a score.

Having clinched their division, the 49ers currently sit with the fourth-best odds of winning this year’s Super Bowl at +750.

Cowboys Bring In Wide Receiver Help

For weeks, it appeared as if the Dallas Cowboys were eyeing free agent wide receiver Odell Beckham to improve the club ahead of a postseason push. While the Cowboys did bring in a veteran receiver, it was not Beckham.

On Monday, the Cowboys agreed to a deal with 33-year-old receiver T.Y. Hilton. The wideout has not played since 2021, when he played in 10 games for the Colts, managing 23 receptions for 331 yards and three scores.

While he is far removed from the receiver that caught 91 passes for 1,448 yards back in 2016, the Cowboys hope that he can help provide depth to a receiving room that also features CeeDee Lamb and Michael Gallup, among others.

Currently, Dallas ranks just 20th in the NFL in passing offense, averaging 215.2 yards per game.

Overall, the Cowboys are 10-3, two games behind the Philadelphia Eagles in the NFC East. In terms of the Super Bowl, they have the fifth-best odds of winning it at +900.

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