Kyler Murray has plenty of NFL teams interested in him as a pro quarterback, but he has already signed a contract with the Oakland A’s. According to Spotrac, Murray signed a one year, $4.6 million contract with the A’s to play as an MLB outfielder. The fact that Murray has yet to shut the door on the NFL has some wondering if the quarterback will try to go pro in both sports.
“It’s never bad to have options, but right now my main focus is this game,” Murray told ESPN prior to the Orange Bowl. “Obviously it wasn’t in the air, but I’ve always felt I could play in the NFL. I’m a confident guy. There’s not a lot of short quarterbacks in the league, but I think there’s more guys paving the way for the transition of not really caring about how big you are, how tall you are. I’ve played this game my whole life and I’ve always felt I could do it.”
Murray put up solid numbers on the 2018 Oklahoma baseball team. Murray hit .296, 56 hits, 10 home runs, 10 stolen bases and 47 RBI in his last season with the Sooners.
The Oakland A’s Selected Murray with the No. 9 Pick of the 2018 MLB Draft
The draft capital the A’s used on Murray shows just how much they believe in him as an MLB prospect. Oakland drafted Murray with the No. 9 pick in the 2018 MLB draft. The A’s front office has been watching the college football season with fingers crossed that their top prospect would remain healthy for 2019.
“We are big Oklahoma fans right now, for sure,” A’s manager Bob Melvin told ESPN. “It’s kind of tough to watch him scramble around a little bit sometimes. But still, it’s exciting…He’s one of the great athletes you’re going to see. How many guys are able to … drafted in the first round … Heisman Trophy winner? There aren’t many of those guys. You know athletically he can handle just about anything.”
Scouts Believe Murray Has MLB Star Power But Some Question Whether He Will Choose Football Over Baseball
There seems to be a consensus that Murray can become a high-level pro baseball player. An MLB scout broke down Murray’s baseball outlook.
“I love him,” an MLB scout told Yahoo Sports. “He can be a star. Plus speed, good raw power, legitimate center fielder. But he’s so far behind the curve because of football, it’s going to take longer for him to develop. And I really wonder if the football bug is too strong for him to say no.”
Some wonder whether Murray loves baseball enough to go through the grind of playing in the minor leagues.
“I have serious doubts he loves baseball enough to grind it out in the minors,” another baseball scout explained to Yahoo Sports. “I just think Kyler is pretty immature mentally and I’m not sure he can handle the real baseball world given that he’s raw and famous.”
Vegas Odds Favor Murray Choosing MLB Over NFL
Vegas released odds in early December on Murray’s future. According to OddsShark, Murray has +650 odds to play in both the NFL and MLB, while the -1200 odds favor Murray to choose one sport. Murray has +400 odds to be selected in the 2019 NFL draft and -600 odds not to be selected.
The majority of the MLB schedule would not conflict with the NFL, but Murray would be challenged in August, September and October when the NFL is back in session. We have seen a select few athletes such as Deion Sanders play both sports.
Despite the Vegas odds, it is reasonable to think Murray may try out the NFL. If it does not work out, Murray could always go back to playing baseball. On the flip side, Murray’s NFL stock is never going to be higher than it is right now after his Heisman campaign at Oklahoma.
Even if Murray does not declare for the NFL draft, don’t be surprised if a team takes a flyer on Murray in the later rounds to retain his draft rights.