It has been talked about to death and debated even longer but come Thursday night the mystery will be solved. We will finally find out who is going to draft one of the most talked about players in recent NFL Draft history– Oklahoma quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner, Kyler Murray.
Why all the fuss? Easy, because NFL teams are starting to realize that dual-threat quarterbacks can work their magic in the NFL just like they did in college. That is, as long as you utilize a system that compliments their talents rather than tries to shoehorn them into something that doesn’t.
Enough teams have done just that with success in recent years that more are starting to consider it. That is essentially why Kliff Kingsbury is now a head coach in the NFL. It is also part of the reason the world thinks he is going to draft Murray with the No. 1 pick Thursday night.
The other part being that Kingsbury once said he would take Murray with the No. 1 pick back when he was still the head coach at Texas Tech. That is why the Cardinals are the overwhelming favorite to take Murray, but 888sport is offering odds on other teams as well:
- Arizona Cardinals -500
- Oakland Raiders +550
- New York Giants +1100
- Miami Dolphins, Jacksonville Jaguars, Washington Redskins +2500
- Cincinnati Bengals +2800
- Green Bay Packers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers +3300
So—where is he going to go?
Green Bay can be eliminated. They just gave Aaron Rodgers a healthy raise; they are not looking to replace him anytime soon. Tampa Bay can probably be eliminated, too. The Buccaneers are not yet married to Jameis Winston, but Bruce Arians is more likely to go after someone that can help Winston, not replace him.
There isn’t any reason to believe the Bengals are interested either. Yes, it would make sense to move on entirely from the failed Marvin Lewis regime by acquiring a new starting quarterback. But a rookie head coach might benefit from having a veteran quarterback in charge of his offense.
Jacksonville is probably a wash as well since they just committed to Nick Foles for the immediate future. That leaves the Cardinals, Raiders, Giants, Dolphins, and Redskins.
It is starting to sound like the Cardinals are possibly going to pass on Murray. The biggest thing tying them to taking Murray was Kingsbury’s comment during his Texas Tech days. Yes, they were said to be shopping Rosen, too. But he is still on the roster.
The Giants have a need, but they appear to be dead set on squeezing another season out of Eli Manning.
There is a need in Miami and Washington. The Dolphins did bring in Ryan Fitzpatrick to play quarterback this season, but he is also the perfect bridge quarterback. Washington sounds like they may still believe Alex Smith is going to come back eventually, and they are prepared for Case Keenum or Colt McCoy to lead the team this year.
Oakland really shouldn’t even be in the conversation, but Jon Gruden does not seem to be a Derek Carr fan. Heading to Las Vegas with someone as exciting as Murray as QB1 could be too enticing for Gruden to pass up.
As far as the draft order goes, the Cardinals pick first, Raiders are fourth followed by the Giants with the No. 6 pick, the Dolphins have the No. 13 pick, and the Redskins are at No. 15. Assuming Arizona passes on him, he should fall into Oakland’s lap at No. 4 (the 49ers and Jets do not need Murray).
There has been enough talk about Murray and the Raiders that the Dolphins or Redskins will have to trade up to No. 2 or 3 to get him. Unless the Raiders trade Derek Carr before the draft, go with Miami or Washington.