At this time last year, Kyler Murray was committed to playing baseball—being drafted by the Oakland Athletics in the first round of the MLB Draft. Just a year later, Murray finds himself as the starting quarterback of the Arizona Cardinals.
The Cardinals selected Murray with the first-overall pick in this year’s NFL Draft. Murray became the first player in history to ever be drafted in the first round in two different sports.
In 2018, Murray had a phenomenal season at Oklahoma in his first season starting under center. Murray had 4,361 yards, 42 touchdowns, and seven interceptions while adding 1,001 yards and 10 touchdowns on the ground.
Those numbers helped the rookie quarterback win the Heisman trophy last year over new Washington Redskins quarterback, Dwayne Haskins. Haskins had 50 touchdowns at Ohio State in 2018.
After the college season ended, there were whispers of Murray leaving Oklahoma to enter the NFL Draft. At first, Murray seemed to be on the fence between baseball and football but leaned towards football in the end.
As most people know, his dad played quarterback at Texas A&M while his uncle played in the MLB. Murray decided to create his own narrative in the NFL playing a sport he loves.
Murray comes to the Cardinals under new head coach, Kliff Kingsbury. Kingsbury was high on Murray even when he coached at Texas Tech—saying he’d select Murray with the number one pick if he had the opportunity.
Fast forward to now and Kingsbury had the first pick and used it to take the mobile quarterback out of Oklahoma. Murray figures to be the starting quarterback in Week 1 after the Cardinals traded Josh Rosen to the Miami Dolphins.
Is Murray ready to step into the role of being a starting quarterback in the NFL? Murray continues to prove doubters wrong so I wouldn’t underestimate the rookie signal caller.
The Oklahoma product was measured to be 5-foot-10 during the NFL Combine. His height has been an area of concern for some critics throughout the offseason.
People have been quick to compare Murray to Russell Wilson with the way he plays and his lack of size. Both guys had success in college but it’s up to Murray to carry that success to the NFL.
The Cardinals are going to be a dynamic offense with Kingsbury calling the shots and Murray under center. Having guys like David Johnson and Larry Fitzgerald is going to be vital for Murray to grow as a player and person.
Furthermore, those guys are going to be targeted a ton by the rookie quarterback in 2019. In 2018, Arizona struggled on the offensive side of the ball, especially in the passing game.
Murray brings a lot to an offense and fits the NFL perfectly with his skill set. He’s able to make plays with his legs and he can throw downfield with accuracy.
With the NFL turning towards being pass-oriented, Murray fits the mold as a quarterback that teams are looking for.
Again, Murray spent the past few seasons believing he’d play baseball but decided to take a chance at playing in the NFL.
In his rookie season, Murray is ready to prove doubters wrong and show that he can be a franchise quarterback in the NFL.