3

Inside Kyler Murray’s football vs. baseball decision

Inside Kyler Murray’s football vs. baseball decision

They were playing on Monday Night Football. And he was in Scranton or Richmond or Durham or wherever it was, playing baseball after having foregone a chance to play quarterback in the NFL. Drew Henson was Kyler Murray before Kyler Murray. And as Murray’s impending early entry into the NFL draft following his Heisman Trophy-winning season at Oklahoma further complicates his football vs. baseball decision, the stakeholders in his career are trying to better understand the true strength of each sport’s allure.

The Oakland Athletics chose Murray with the ninth pick in the 2018 Major League Baseball draft and lavished him with a $4.66 million bonus. They still believe he will play baseball. NFL teams are frothing over his college tape and giving themselves every reason to look past his 5-foot-9 frame. They’re convinced he will play football.cheap nfl jerseys china nike

“A lot of it comes down to what’s in your heart, what’s your passion, what you can be excited to do for this next chapter of your life,” Henson told ESPN in a phone conversation Thursday. “Do you like watching film more than you like hitting in the cage? Are you willing to give two seasons to staying in small towns and hotels and grinding it out and struggling and playing in front of 500 people when guys you dominated in college are playing on Monday Night Football?”3

Henson’s hypothetical is Murray’s reality. And when the San Francisco Chronicle on Tuesday night first reported that the A’s expect Murray to declare for the draft, the months of questions about his fitness to play quarterback in the NFL at 5-9 and 180 pounds almost vanished. In their stead came assessments of more and more evaluators who were grading him a first-round NFL talent — “magic,” as executives told ESPN’s Adam Schefter. Plus the video of Kliff Kingsbury, the new coach of the on-the-clock Arizona Cardinals, saying months ago he’d take Murray with the No. 1 pick in the draft. As the football set celebrated Murray’s symbolic step toward leaning in its direction, one A’s fan and baseball blogger was so dismayed she sent a vicious tweet about Murray and wound up getting fired.cheap nike nfl jerseys wholesale

This is the power of Kyler Murray, an athlete whose dynamism convinced the A’s to spend the ninth pick in the draft on him with fewer than 250 college at-bats to his name, a dynamo whose athleticism didn’t just allow him to function while standing behind an offensive line at Oklahoma that averaged 6-4½, but turn in an all-time-great season with 4,361 yards, 42 touchdown passes and just 7 interceptions. It is good to be loved, and Murray has dual — and dueling — paramours with boundless ardor.

The only question is to whom Murray will reciprocate. Whichever path Murray chooses between now and the Feb. 15 report date to A’s spring training is potentially rich with fulfillment, success and money. They are also wildly disparate.