On stats alone, Kyler Murray is easily the top quarterback in the draft

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Kyler Murray, Oklahoma’s Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback, has two major question marks heading into the NFL draft: Whether he can make it as the NFL’s shortest quarterback, and whether he’ll even play football at all, or decide instead to play Major League Baseball.

But if we judge a quarterback based only on his production, Murray is a huge outlier: On college stats alone, he’s easily the top quarterback in this year’s draft.

As noted by Hayden Winks of Rotoworld, Murray was far and away the most efficient quarterback in this year’s draft class. Murray has the best rushing stats of any quarterback in the 2019 draft, but his passing numbers are better still. His 13.0 adjusted yards per pass attempt (a statistic that takes yards per pass and awards bonus yards for touchdowns and subtracts yards for interceptions) is other-worldly. A year ago, Baker Mayfield‘s 12.9 adjusted yards per pass attempt was considered an extremely impressive point in his favor as some observers questioned whether he was really an elite NFL prospect. And Murray’s number even exceeds Mayfield’s.

That doesn’t mean Murray is going to be the player it appears Mayfield will be after his excellent rookie year in Cleveland. But the talk about Murray’s height and baseball may be overshadowing just how ridiculously good his numbers are.

67 responses to “On stats alone, Kyler Murray is easily the top quarterback in the draft

  1. I don’t know anything about adjusted yards per attempt, but I know Murray had 4,361 yards, 42 TDs, 7 interceptions, and completed 69% of his passes. Dwayne Haskins had 4,831 yards, 50 TDs, 8 interceptions, and completed 70% of his passes. I think Haskins’ stats are good enough to call into question the claim that Murray is easily the top QB in the draft on stats alone.

  2. IN. A. CONFERENCE. THAT. DOESN’T. PLAY. DEFENSE.

    Look at what he did against an SEC team; Mayfield is a better decision maker, not just a stat runner. That’s the huge difference.

  3. Lot’s of college QBs have put up huge numbers, then cratered in the NFL. Murray played in the defense deficient Big 12. He was on a team much more talented than the rest of his conference.

    His height is a concern, but not the only one. I’d say buyer beware on Murray.

  4. I watched Flutie his whole career… hell I even have a flutie autographed football. Murry is more dynamic than flutie with his legs and has a better arm (fluties was pretty damn good though) but Flutie was much smarter and came into the league with a savvy that Murry will never attain in his career. I would question his ability te read Ds and process info the most before questioning his height.
    and his height IS a big issue.

  5. Big difference in a short scrawny QB like Murray, and a short beefy QB, like Russell Wilson. I wouldn’t go near Murray – he looks like a 2nd Baseman….not a QB

  6. thetooloftools says:
    February 8, 2019 at 12:37 pm
    Height is still overrated when judging the fitness of a QB in the NFL. I don’t care what anyone says, Doug Flutie had a very successful NFL career.
    =============================================
    yes he had more Ws than Ls but a 54% Completion percentage and barely more TDs than Ints is hardly a success

  7. I don’t watch college ball so I know nothing about this player. However I do know many QBs that had great stats in college go the NFL and never develop into good NFL players.

    The most important thing for an NFL QB is football IQ and a mind capable of quickly processing what’s in front of him to make a good decision. If he has it he’ll be successful in the NFL, if he doesn’t he won’t be.

  8. thetooloftools says:
    February 8, 2019 at 12:37 pm
    Height is still overrated when judging the fitness of a QB in the NFL. I don’t care what anyone says, Doug Flutie had a very successful NFL career.
    —————–
    I saw Flutie play and he was great fun to watch, a good QB too, but he had to jump to see over the line and often jump to throw too, and those lines have gotten a lot bigger since even his day.

  9. daysundone says:
    February 8, 2019 at 12:43 pm
    IN. A. CONFERENCE. THAT. DOESN’T. PLAY. DEFENSE.

    Look at what he did against an SEC team; Mayfield is a better decision maker, not just a stat runner. That’s the huge difference.
    ________________________________________________

    417 yards in semifinal championship game vs Alabama. NO turnovers. That’s the SEC Alabama. He may not be a NFL QB but your point is totally wrong.

  10. Manziel had impressive film too but he lacked maturity. This kid also lacks maturity in a different way than Manziel and he also seems apathetic and unintelligent which are disastrous attributes for an NFL QB trying to lead grown men on the field. I wouldn’t draft him before the 3rd round even if there was no baseball distraction.

  11. Here’s another short QB, juste one inch taller than Murray : Drew Brees (74437 yards, 520 TDs, 2 times offensive player of the year, Super Bowl winner and Super Bowl MVP).

    I’m not saying that Murray will match Brees, but I don’t think being tall is that important.

  12. Undoubtedly, Murray had one phenomenal year at Oklahoma. But then again, it was also just ONE YEAR. I would like to see more starts before using a first round pick on a “franchise” qb.

  13. The difference is that Mayfield passed the eyeball test…and his accuracy is ridiculous. Murray looks like a QB that will sink in the NFL.

  14. harrisonhits2 says:
    February 8, 2019 at 12:53 pm

    The most important thing for an NFL QB is football IQ and a mind capable of quickly processing what’s in front of him to make a good decision. If he has it he’ll be successful in the NFL, if he doesn’t he won’t be.
    *******************************
    You often have good posts, this is another. His height is going to reduce what he can see and he can only process the information he has. A taller QB, say 6-4, can see much more.

    Picture Tom Brady standing there surveying the field and weighing his options. Now picture Doug Flutie running for his life. Which do you prefer?

  15. tedbundysson says:
    February 8, 2019 at 1:01 pm

    417 yards in semifinal championship game vs Alabama. NO turnovers. That’s the SEC Alabama. He may not be a NFL QB but your point is totally wrong.

    ______________________________________

    6-for-13 for 122 yards in the entire first half. Him running will not translate into the NFL the way it did in college; again, he was still bottled up when facing a real defense.

    The point I was making wasn’t about stats that he picked up when Bama so clearly went soft in the second half. If you’ve seen that game, you know it was nothing about OU outsmarting Bama’s defense– it was a team, ahead by a mile, laying back.
    Murray was dominated in that game.

  16. His 13.0 adjusted yards per pass attempt (a statistic that takes yards per pass and awards bonus yards for touchdowns and subtracts yards for interceptions) is other-worldly.

    ———————————–

    Wondering how much his projected first round pick this year at wide receiver (Marquise Brown) helped that stat with his 18 yards per reception average and 10 touchdowns? Brown was wide open deep down the field fairly often.

  17. razzlejag says: “His height is going to reduce what he can see and he can only process the information he has. A taller QB, say 6-4, can see much more. Picture Tom Brady standing there surveying the field and weighing his options. Now picture Doug Flutie running for his life. Which do you prefer?”
    =====================

    Brock Osweiler is 6’8″.
    Paxton Lynch is 6’7″.
    Blake Bortles is 6’5″.
    Zack Mettenberger is 6’5″.

    I’ll take Russell Wilson at 5’11”.

  18. How does 1 inch get you from 5’9″ to 6′??

    Martin says:
    Here’s another short QB, juste one inch taller than Murray : Drew Brees…

  19. So many “experts” here posting that are just matter of fact & definite. How does he not “look” like he can be successful? How is a qb that gets drunk, tries to run from the police & gets arrested a better decision maker or who disrepspectfully plants the OU flag Buckeye stadium & has to apologize a better decision maker?(And I’m an OU fan) Thank you to the article writer for a FACT based article & analysis. I saw Flutie play also & he was awesome. All Flutie did was make plays.

  20. Bad year for QBs if Kyler Murray is a top 5 pick.

    He would make a great Julien Edelman Part 2 type of player.

  21. Someone said he was built like a second baseman, well I say a slim second baseman, he needs to bulk up to at least 190 and then what does that do to his mechanics. I think the PR/ hype parade is over. Do you see him taking a hit from a 240 pound LB or even a 210 pound safety. Both careers would be over. Unless he runs a crazy 4.25 40 and can vertical 38+ inches, he needs to take that MLB money and run with it. I would certainly question the GM who would take a 1st round chance on him!

  22. What’s with all of the hate on Murray? The kid simply wants to try and play QB in the NFL, What the hell is wrong with that? And, if it doesn’t work out,so be it. At least he tried, He can always go back and play baseball. It doesn’t work the other way around. Take your shot kid! I’ll be pulling for you.

  23. seems like all teams want guys who are totally committed to football. considering how hard these guys have to work, and especially how hard the qb position is, i would imagine most teams are not too thrilled about the info this guy has put out about his commitment level. his agents need to get a handle on him and what he says because it cant be helping him any.

  24. Everyone saying Doug Flutie was awesome might want to have their memory checked. He had a career completion pct under 55% and a rating of 76. Those numbers are pretty much on par with those of Mark Sanchez.

  25. You don’t ‘choose’ to play MLB. They choose you after many long bus rides and success at each stop.

    The NFL, they choose you to either play in the league, practice squad or the couch.

  26. Stats are for losers. 5’8″ is not “too short”. It’s lilliputian for a QB. How Gulliver can a team be?

  27. One season as a starter. Five foot-whatever-but-less-than-eleven. No clear commitment to the sport.

    Enough with the comparisons to Doug Flutie, who threw 1300 passes in college, or Russell Wilson, who threw 1500, or Drew Brees, who threw almost 1700. This kid has 519 pass attempts in three seasons.

    Not interested.

  28. anyone who thinks a 5’9 185 lb guy is gonna last as an NFL quarterback probably shouldnt talk about pro football for a living.
    hes too damn small for pro football.
    probably a baseball stud and nothing wrong with that

  29. Not every QB can play in the Big 12 where defense is optional. Lets not get ahead of ourselves with Mayfield either. Lots of QBs show promise their first year then D-coordinators get some film on them and they don’t look the same.

  30. Rob Brzezinski is a Magician says:
    February 8, 2019 at 12:41 pm
    I don’t know anything about adjusted yards per attempt, but I know Murray had 4,361 yards, 42 TDs, 7 interceptions, and completed 69% of his passes. Dwayne Haskins had 4,831 yards, 50 TDs, 8 interceptions, and completed 70% of his passes. I think Haskins’ stats are good enough to call into question the claim that Murray is easily the top QB in the draft on stats alone.

    —————

    Exactly! And how does adj yards per attempt work? It supposedly adds points for tds & subtracts for ints? Haskins had 8 more TDs with only 1 more int!

    Murray’s numbers were very good, but Haskin’s are better.

  31. After his DP interview, I was shocked at how immature and unprepared he was. Doesn’t inspire much confidence if I was going to draft him. Did not look or sound like a leader of men. I’d pass…

  32. Rob Brzezinski is a Magician says:
    February 8, 2019 at 12:41 pm
    I don’t know anything about adjusted yards per attempt, but I know Murray had 4,361 yards, 42 TDs, 7 interceptions, and completed 69% of his passes. Dwayne Haskins had 4,831 yards, 50 TDs, 8 interceptions, and completed 70% of his passes. I think Haskins’ stats are good enough to call into question the claim that Murray is easily the top QB in the draft on stats alone.
    _______________________________
    Haskins had 500 more yards yet threw 200 more passes….not impressed.

  33. Stop, wilson is 1 inch shorter than brees, and 2inches taller than murray.. he’s really short and people say he’s same frame as wilson, he is not, he weighs between 190-195, this is a small guy. guys that size in the NFL never last.

    Martin says:
    February 8, 2019 at 1:03 pm
    Here’s another short QB, juste one inch taller than Murray : Drew Brees (74437 yards, 520 TDs, 2 times offensive player of the year, Super Bowl winner and Super Bowl MVP).

    I’m not saying that Murray will match Brees, but I don’t think being tall is that important.

  34. I don’t know, Haskins put up some beastly numbers that didn’t need an adjustment. They were statistical facts. That being said, Murray plays against and with linemen who will be in the NFL. I don’t think they grow an extra two feet once they get there, so size doesn’t matter. Offenses work on passing lanes and deep balls now. He’ll be ok at the next level.

  35. whynotjustadmitit says:
    February 8, 2019 at 4:05 pm

    Rob Brzezinski is a Magician says:
    February 8, 2019 at 12:41 pm
    I don’t know anything about adjusted yards per attempt, but I know Murray had 4,361 yards, 42 TDs, 7 interceptions, and completed 69% of his passes. Dwayne Haskins had 4,831 yards, 50 TDs, 8 interceptions, and completed 70% of his passes. I think Haskins’ stats are good enough to call into question the claim that Murray is easily the top QB in the draft on stats alone.
    _______________________________
    Haskins had 500 more yards yet threw 200 more passes….not impressed.
    ______________

    He threw 156 more passes, but who’s counting? The point remains that the stats are comparable, and there’s more to passing stats than yards per attempt. A lot depends on how your offense is designed and what the defenses are doing. The Big 10 plays better defense than the Big 12, so Haskins saw a lot fewer wide receivers running free 40 yards downfield.

  36. What kind of college stats did Tom Brady have? Obviously not good enough for any of the 32 teams to draft him in the first 5 rounds. On the other hand, as long as we’re talking about how good a guy looks on paper, Ken Dorsey should have about 6 super bowl rings by now.

  37. TheBisonCometh says:
    February 8, 2019 at 1:44 pm
    You know WHAT this hype train is about….

    And it’s very little to do with his height.
    ___________________________________________

    No, please say, specifically what it’s about.

    Come on, don’t be PC. Just say what you mean…

  38. Why does every short (under 6’1″) QB get compared to Doug Flutie? I know flutie is getting to be ancient history now, but he was awful. Wade Phillips let him start for 2 and a half years and if it wasn’t for Flutie the Bills really might’ve a super bowl. He was like a pocket size blake bortles

  39. 3lmt says:
    February 8, 2019 at 8:12 pm
    TheBisonCometh says:
    February 8, 2019 at 1:44 pm
    You know WHAT this hype train is about….

    And it’s very little to do with his height.
    ___________________________________________

    No, please say, specifically what it’s about.

    Come on, don’t be PC. Just say what you mean…
    ————-
    This hype train is about $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$
    As it is every year for any potential first round pick.

  40. Rob Brzezinski is a Magician says:
    February 8, 2019 at 5:35 pm
    whynotjustadmitit says:
    February 8, 2019 at 4:05 pm

    Rob Brzezinski is a Magician says:
    February 8, 2019 at 12:41 pm
    I don’t know anything about adjusted yards per attempt, but I know Murray had 4,361 yards, 42 TDs, 7 interceptions, and completed 69% of his passes. Dwayne Haskins had 4,831 yards, 50 TDs, 8 interceptions, and completed 70% of his passes. I think Haskins’ stats are good enough to call into question the claim that Murray is easily the top QB in the draft on stats alone.
    _______________________________
    Haskins had 500 more yards yet threw 200 more passes….not impressed.
    ______________

    He threw 156 more passes, but who’s counting? The point remains that the stats are comparable, and there’s more to passing stats than yards per attempt. A lot depends on how your offense is designed and what the defenses are doing. The Big 10 plays better defense than the Big 12, so Haskins saw a lot fewer wide receivers running free 40 yards downfield.
    __________________
    True about the offenses being designed differently but Oklahoma’s strength of schedule was 8th. OSU was 15th. It’s not Kyler’s fault he had more talent on the offensive side of the ball. Take a second to think about Kyers stats had he thrown 156 more passes @ 13 yards per attempt?? That’s 2,000 more yards. 6500 total! Un-frickin-imaginable. Same goes for TUA and he played in the SEC, which has better defenses than the big10 And big12. Give this kid his props and let him live.

  41. I am sure teams will test him out before the draft. Can he throw accurately and consistently? Will he be able to throw and see past NFL lines? Can he complete passes under NFL type pressure? Can he make decisions with the ball at NFL speed? All those questions and more will be answered before any team decides to pick Murray. His college play is only enough to give him the opportunity to be further looked at by NFL teams. It is no guarantee that he will be able to play at a level high enough to be great in the NFL.

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