One day before the deadline to apply for the NFL draft as an early entrant, Kyler Murray met with Oakland Athletics’ leadership as they hoped to convince him to remain committed to playing baseball. Early reports from the meeting state it will take a $15 million contract for the A’s to get their wish.
Instead of this meeting clearing things up, it instead raised even more questions. Such as, would the A’s actually do this? Or did this news just come out as an attempt to sway the narrative to, “Well, the A’s did what they could. This is on Murray.”?
Perhaps this news will actually hurt Murray’s draft stock. Mike Florio brought up the possibility of a team drafting Murray in the range that would pay him the desired $15 million and the A’s coming in to match it. Seemingly, that could swing teams away from using a first-round pick on a player that could just get up and switch sports. It’s a high risk game for a NFL franchise to use an early pick on Murray and invest in him only to have him stay with the Athletics. It makes sense for the A’s – if they are going to offer it – to wait until then to offer him the hefty amount.
It turns out MLB, who sent marketing executives to the meeting today, is also doing their part to keep him off the football field, because getting a famous player, a Heisman winner like Murray to forego a potentially lucrative quarterback career would be a big victory.
The chances seem high at this point that Murray, who projects to be one of the first quarterbacks taken, will enter the draft. But what happens after that is where this story truly begins, and may depend on a lot more negotiation and maneuvering, and also on just how the NFL talent evaluators place him.