Kyler Murray has become the hottest topic in this year’s NFL Draft, and for good reason.
He’s coming off of a spectacular season at Oklahoma where he threw for 4,361 yards, 42 touchdowns, and just seven interceptions. He also proved his ability to run the ball as he rushed for 1,001 yards and scored 12 times on his way to collecting the Heisman Trophy in 2018. Fellow Sooner QB, Baker Mayfield, won that honor last year, making it the first time in history that a school had back-to-back Heisman Trophy winners.
For someone that didn’t lift a finger at the combine, he had the most buzz surrounding him from the time he stepped into Lucas Oil Stadium. There was a lot of skepticism surrounding Murray because of his small stature, but he erased a lot of team’s concerns when he was measured at 5-foot-10 and one-eighth of an inch tall. This was a far better number than the 5-foot-8 inches that he had been listed at this season. He was also listed at 195 pounds this past season, which is not an ideal weight for an NFL player. He bulked up to 207 pounds for the combine, seemingly squashing any speculation that he doesn’t have the body type to play at the next level.
Murray is an uber-talented athlete that excelled at multiple sports, including baseball. He was such an exceptional baseball player that he ended up being drafted by the Oakland Athletics with the ninth overall pick in the MLB Draft. He signed a contract with Oakland that had a signing bonus worth $4.66 million in guaranteed money but was allowed to play for Oklahoma for one season. That one season turned into a Heisman Trophy and the opportunity to become the first quarterback off the board, or even the number one overall pick in this season’s draft.
At first glance, people may not expect Murray to be a target for the Patriots because they usually opt for the tall, prototypical pocket-passers. As much as Murray is known for his speed and ability to get out of the pocket, he is just as good in the pocket. He has the NFL-caliber arm to make all the big-league throws and the ability to promptly read a defense allowing him to use his quick release to beat the defense. Even when he escapes the pocket when a play breaks down, Murray keeps his eyes downfield and is able to repeatedly make thrilling plays.
With Tom Brady entering his 19th season this coming year, the Patriots would be smart to draft his successor in this year’s draft. Murray would have at least one season to get acclimated to New England’s complex playbook and get accustomed to the “Patriot Way.” In the NFL Fan Blitz Seven-Round Mock Draft, which will be released soon, the Patriots were able to snag Kyler Murray in the first round with the 32nd pick. This was a blessing, as Murray went much earlier in the two NFL Fan Blitz mock drafts that took place prior to the seven-round mock. The first was a single-round mock draft in which Murray went 24th overall to the Raiders. In the second mock draft, it was three rounds with trades on the table and Murray wound up going fourth overall to the Arizona Cardinals.
This is where things get interesting. Kliff Kingsbury is the head coach of the Arizona Cardinals and is on record saying he would draft Kyler Murray number one overall if he had the choice. This was back when he was the head coach of Texas Tech, where he had the opportunity to recruit Murray and coach against him in Big 12 conference play.
Now, he has the choice. The Arizona Cardinals just so happen to have the first overall pick so the ball is officially in Kingsbury’s court.
If Kingsbury wants to draft Murray, he can do just that with the first pick, but he may have to give up the current starting quarterback in Josh Rosen. The Cardinals traded up in last year’s draft to pick Rosen 10th overall, so drafting Murray becomes a bit more tricky. It is being reported by several people that Kingsbury is willing to trade Rosen to the highest bidder and will select Murray with the first pick come this April.
NFL beat writer, Omar Kelly, tweeted this out on March 3rd.
Kyler Murray will be the No. 1 overall pick and Josh Rosen will likely be traded before free agency starts. The streets is talking and Washington is the likely landing spot for Rosen.
— Omar Kelly (@OmarKelly) March 4, 2019
He says Washington could be the landing spot for Rosen if this all comes to fruition, but why not the Patriots? They could possibly land the 10th overall pick of last year’s draft at a discount and secure Tom Brady’s successor for the future.
It will be interesting to see if Bill Belichick is willing to pull off a trade to land their quarterback of the future if they know Murray won’t be available at pick No. 32.