With football being described as a game of inches, the half-inch that was added onto Kyler Murray was apparently enough to ease the concerns of some NFL coaches and general managers. The 2018 Heisman trophy winner went to the combine and measured 5-foot, 10.5 inches, a tad taller than many thought he would be.
He also checked in heavier than he was when he was the quarterback of Oklahoma. When he was with the Sooners, he was 195 pounds, but on Wednesday he weighed 207.
Team management continued the debate on whether Murray can make it in the NFL. Some weren’t swayed by his increase in both height and weight. New York Giants head coach Pat Shumur wasn’t one of them. He told the New York Post that Murray is similar stature of Seattle’s Russell Wilson, and can play in the league.
“Russell Wilson won a Super Bowl,” Shurmur said. “I think you’ve got to look at the total player, you’ve got to look at his productivity and you’ve got to look at whether he fits. We, as coaches, will use their skill sets to the best of their ability to try to get the most out of them and help you win games.”
Shumar’s boss, general manager Dave Gettleman, though is not convinced Murray will succeed in the NFL. The Giants have the sixth pick in April’s draft and Murray isn’t mentioned as highly as the five quarterbacks that were taken in the first round in 2018.
“You can talk about it all you want, the game’s changing and everybody’s going crazy about all the stuff the college guys are doing,” Gettleman said. “The bottom line is it’s a big man’s game. So, if you don’t have size, if you’re missing physical qualities, so to speak, you have to have what I call a compensating factor. And the compensating factor a lot of times is instincts. One of the things that I focus on, and my staff, we talk about all the time, is instincts. Does he have a feel for the game? Is he a step ahead of everybody else? Instincts and play smarts allow you to play bigger, stronger, faster. That’s a fact of life.”
Oakland has been linked to possibly wanting Murray, but coach Jon Gruden shot down that speculation, saying that Derek Carr was their franchise quarterback.
“People try to read between the lines,” Gruden said. “Some guy asked me a question at the Senior Bowl about Kyler Murray and all of a sudden … Honest to God, Jiminy Christmas. People will write whatever they want.”
Head Games Begin
Now one of the most interesting aspects begins, which is where team executives who have no intention of drafting Murray start touting how he is the best quarterback since Tom Brady.
The team with the No. 1 pick, the Arizona Cardinals, chose a quarterback in the first round last year in Josh Rosen. Despite Rosen’s mixed performance last season, they probably aren’t drafting another signal caller. That hasn’t stopped new coach Kliff Kingsbury from saying that he would draft Murray in the first round.
San Francisco has no intention of drafting Murray, or any other quarterback, but that didn’t stop 49ers general manager John Lynch from saying what a great addition he would be.
”I hadn’t seen Kyler play much, man,” Lynch said. “It is electric, and it’s fun to watch. That Heisman was for real.”