NFC Notes: 49ers, Cardinals, Kyler Murray, Seahawks


49ers DB coach Daniel Bullocks is looking at a scenario where third-round S J’Aiyir Brown could play alongside safeties Talanoa Hufanga and Tashaun Gipson

“He has our DNA that we’re looking for on defense,” Bullocks said, via “We’re looking for a guy that’s physical, that’s smart, that can finish. When you look at Ji’Ayir, he’s versatile. He can line up on all three levels of the defense. He can line up on the line of scrimmage. He can rush off the edge. He can drop back a level and play man coverage. He can play zone as well. And he can also drop back into the post and show that range and go get the football.”


Cardinals QB Kyler Murray hopes to return in time for the season opener.

When you look further down the line, it seems like we got a long way to go. Ideally, I want to be back by Week 1,” Murray said, via “That’s the goal. At the end of the day, that’s the goal, but I can’t really look that far ahead. Got to take it one day at a time.

Murray added that he’s keeping a positive mindset during his rehabilitation period.

It’s got to be a positive. There’s really no option for it to be a negative,” Murray added. “I feel like you get your little grace period as soon as it happens. Let the feelings take over but after that, we got to go. Life doesn’t stop, the job doesn’t stop. My ultimate goal is to get better and obviously win Super Bowls. That’s my goal.


The Seahawks’ passing game was pretty strong in 2022, with both WRs D.K. Metcalf and Tyler Lockett topping 1,000 yards receiving thanks to a breakout year from QB Geno Smith. That group is looking for ways to get even better in 2023 and has zeroed in on improving yards after catch 

“With each guy, there were definitely different things we looked at and collectively we looked at during the season and after the season, and said, ‘These are the areas we can improve,’” Smith said via Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer. “One of the main things for us is yards after catch — we want to increase our YAC — so really just working on timing, talking through coverages, allowing those guys to understand what we’re thinking as quarterbacks, what our timing is, when they should get into what window on a given play. Just getting those guys more up to speed and teaching them a little more about the game, which they’re already great at, is big. And just connecting a little bit more.”

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