With star quarterback Kyler Murray sidelined with an ankle injury for their game against the San Francisco 49ers, the Arizona Cardinals have activated former Winnipeg Blue Bomber Chris Streveler for the first time in 2021.
Streveler entered the 2021 NFL season as the third-string QB behind Murray and veteran backup Colt McCoy. In the off-season, Arizona signed McCoy to a one-year contract worth over $1.2 million as experienced insurance and he’ll have the reins Sunday, with Streveler serving as backup.
Streveler dressed every game last season behind Murray. The live snaps Streveler had prior to the last game of the regular schedule — two — came in Week 1. He converted a third and short situation for a first down in a 24-20 victory over San Francisco. It was the first time a former CFL quarterback recorded an NFL statistic since 2009.
Streveler saw his first extended action in the NFL during final week of the regular season with a playoff spot on the line. After Murray was injured during the opening series against the Los Angeles Rams in Week 17, Streveler took the field following a Jordan Hicks interception early in the first quarter.
The former Winnipeg Blue Bomber played until Murray returned for a portion of the fourth quarter. Streveler finished the game completing 11-of-16 passes for 105 yards with one touchdown and one interception, which was brought back 84 yards for a touchdown just before halftime.
While Streveler was in the game, Murray was working with trainers to loosen up his right ankle enough to come back. He returned to the field in the fourth quarter with his final two drives resulting in a blocked field goal and a punt. The 2019 No. 1 overall pick completed 8-of-11 attempts for 87 yards in the game.
It was a win or go home match-up for the Cardinals against an NFC West division rival. If Arizona beat Los Angeles, the Cards would have made the post-season as a wildcard team. However, Aaron Donald, Jalen Ramsey and the tough Rams’ defence made it difficult for Streveler and the offence to move the football.
The 26-year-old Streveler made $628,094 in his first NFL season and is slated to collect $780,000 this year.
He threw for 2,698 yards in two seasons with the Bombers along with 19 touchdowns and 19 interceptions. He has rushed for 1,167 yards and 22 touchdowns averaging 5.7 yards per carry.
Streveler was especially effective for Winnipeg during the 2019 CFL championship run in the post-season. He rushed for 82 yards and a touchdown in the West Semi-Final in Calgary and threw a touchdown pass to Andrew Harris in the Grey Cup.
The University of South Dakota product has drawn comparisons to New Orleans Saints’ quarterback Taysom Hill as an explosive athlete who can attack defences with his arm and legs. He runs a 4.45-second 40-yard dash, posted a 38.5-inch vertical, and fired off a 10-foot, five-inch broad jump – all at six-foot-two, 209 pounds.