Murray arrives in New York as the man in form and arguably favourite to lift a fourth grand slam title on the back of a superb summer that has already included winning Wimbledon and an Olympic gold medal.
The Scot's case was further strengthened on Friday when Djokovic, his chief rival, announced the wrist problem that hampered him at the Olympics had still not healed and "private issues", now resolved, had festered behind his summer slump.
With Roger Federer absent from Flushing Meadows while he recovers from a back problem and Nadal still suffering from a wrist injury of his own, the year's final major tournament suddenly appears there for Murray's taking.
The world No. 2, however, is unconvinced.
"To be honest, Novak and Rafa, they're both in the top half. Them having wrist problems doesn't affect my chances of getting to the final as I wouldn't have to play them in that stage anyway," Murray said.
"I think Rafa pretty much proved his fitness in Rio, playing a lot of tennis, winning the doubles and also playing as many matches as anyone there. And in singles as well.
"And then Novak obviously missed Cincinnati but only a few weeks ago he was playing in Canada as well.
"He's played enough matches. It's just whether he's fully recovered. We will see that when he plays."
Murray has taken false comfort from Djokovic's apparent ailments before -- most notably during last year's Australian Open final when the Serb was hobbling on a bad ankle, only to storm back to victory -- and the British number one may be wary of being burned again.
"Novak just missed Cincinnati. I don't know how he's feeling," Murray said. "If he's playing here he must be feeling pretty good."
The top seed has also won four of the last five major titles available and lost to Murray just twice in 15 meetings.
It does, however, offer a hint of vulnerability about a player who, until Sam Querrey's heroics at Wimbledon, appeared infallible and primed for a period of dominance similar to Federer almost 10 years ago.
Federer, 35, Nadal, 30, Djokovic and Murray, both 29, have together won 45 of the last 51 grand slams but Murray admits there is now a chink of light for the rest of the field.
"All of us are getting towards the end of our careers, we're in the latter stages," said Murray, who plays Lukas Rosol in round one on Tuesday.
"We have all been up in the top 10 in the world, me and Novak (nearly 10 years), for Roger and Rafa it's been longer than that -- 15 years for Roger and probably 13 years for Rafa, who has played loads of matches.
"So it's normal there would be wear and tear on the body and you pick up a few more injuries as you go on in your career.
"I think when everyone is fit and healthy they are capable of winning these major events. But there are injuries and it gives opportunities for other guys to make a break.
"That's going to happen over the next few years, for sure, because I can't go on forever."