Kyler Murray keeps door open for baseball

Kyler Murray Signs Contract
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From Tom Brady to Deshaun Watson to Russell Wilson to Aaron Rodgers, quarterbacks increasingly have realized the power they have. The next wave of quarterbacks with leverage and willingness to use it could include Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray.

Murray, the first overall pick in the 2019 draft, continues to talk about potentially playing baseball. A top-10 pick of the A’s, he’d have a baseball gig whenever he’d want it.

I’m not trying to start anything, I’m just talking,” Murray told reporters after raising the subject in a Thursday session with reporters, via Darren Urban of the team’s official website.

Sometimes talking is enough to start something. In this case, however, there’s nothing to really start. Baseball has always been an option for Murray, from the moment he chose to enter the NFL draft. Unlike the overwhelming majority of football players, Murray can play another sport at a high level. He could make as much, maybe more, in baseball. (Former Notre Dame receiver Jeff Samardzija, who could have been a first-round pick in 2007, played baseball for more years than former Lions receiver Calvin Johnson, the second overall pick in 2007, played football. Samardzija also earned more from his baseball career than Johnson earned from his football career.)

Whether Murray ever makes the change to baseball, the mere possibility of doing so gives him more power. What if he doesn’t like the long-term offers he gets from the Cardinals after he becomes eligible for a new deal after the 2021 season? What if the Cardinals eventually apply the franchise tag and Murray decides to pull a Le'Veon Bell, sitting out a full year (or longer). Unlike Bell, Murray would earn very good money while playing baseball.

Football players who aren’t happy with their contractual offers rarely have a viable Door No. 2. Murray has one, and will continue to have one.

So Murray isn’t starting anything at all. He’s continuing to remind the Cardinals and everyone else of the elephant in the room, holding a bat in its trunk and balancing itself on a giant baseball. Football needs Murray more than he needs football. Sometimes, that’s what a guy needs in order to get fully and fairly compensated for his skills, abilities, and sacrifices.

And who knows? Maybe Murray — who has said he’d love to play both sports — eventually will try to engineer a situation in which he can play both baseball and football in the same city.

Until he slams the door on baseball (or on football), the possibility will continue to linger. Until he keeps talking about baseball, the door definitely won’t be slammed.

45 responses to “Kyler Murray keeps door open for baseball

  1. Contract leverage for his average play as a starting quarterback. Nothing more.

  2. This guy doesn’t have the heart or body for football. Hard to believe AZ put all of their eggs in one basket w him and Kingsbury. Big time rebuild coming soon when they’re both gone.

  3. COULD make more? Not only would he almost definitely make more if he were successful, but every penny of every contract is fully guaranteed from the moment he signs it. And almost no chance of winding up drooling in his oatmeal by the time he’s 50 from concussions.

  4. Does anybody really believe Kyler Murray would sit out of Football to go play Double A Baseball? It took Mike Trout 2 years in the minors and 5 years in the big Leagues to accumulate $30 million in career earnings. That was after winning ROY and two MVP’s. Kyler’s worst possible offer will be more than $30 million a year. He may have leverage, but it will not be because of Baseball.

  5. He should go and play baseball. He has taken too much pounding in his short NFL career already.

  6. joshuadwatson says:
    June 10, 2021 at 4:22 pm
    Does anybody really believe Kyler Murray would sit out of Football to go play Double A Baseball? It took Mike Trout 2 years in the minors and 5 years in the big Leagues to accumulate $30 million in career earnings. That was after winning ROY and two MVP’s. Kyler’s worst possible offer will be more than $30 million a year. He may have leverage, but it will not be because of Baseball.

    LOL. That’s a great point if you ignore the fact that Mike Trout is now playing on a fully guaranteed $426,500,000 dollar deal.

  7. You’re comparing what a WR (who switched to the MLB) would of made over the course of his career to what Murray could make in the NFL as a QB, two entirely different things. With a successful season this year Murray is looking at what? Baseline $40M per season. What did Mahomes just sign for? That’s the kind of money Murray will be looking for with a successful season after this next year. No MLB team is going to guarantee him that amount of money day 1 in the bigs, he will have to go earn it and start his career over in his mid 20s.

    Secondly any contract Murray signs you can GUARANTEE will have a no baseball clause. Arizona would be criminally negligent to guarantee that kid 35-40+ a season with baseball still on the table. Murray isn’t going to play baseball, he would have to walk away from 100M+ guaranteed and completely start his career over. And with the way the NCAA has been pumping out QBs over the last 5 or so years Murray is not irreplaceable.

  8. I was all on board for him to play baseball coming out of college. The sport is much kinder to the body and the player contracts are way more fair to players. That said: the minor league doesn’t pay to well, and even high draft picks often linger there for 1-3 years to help the teams maximize years of control. So choosing football (paydirt) initially might well have been the smart move. As a 21-22 year old his body has more muscular maturing to do and he may be able to fit right onto a major league roster now at 24-25. Mo money mo money.

    That 165 game schedule, though…

  9. Another star player who VERY early on has learned in this sport as far as contracts go Leverage is King. Smart young man Arizona has a good one.

  10. Kyler Murray is fools gold. Just good enough to start, not good enough to win anything significant. He’s like a top talent CFL player. In a wide open game he has the tools to run and chuck it up. But in a tight defensive game where his only real option is to check down, his small size becomes exposed. Big statistical games cover up the disappointing weeks where he more liability than a benefit. I don’t think any legitimate championship contender would consider him as a starter, but he fits in Arizona where somewhere between 7-10 and 9-8 is acceptable.

  11. Yeah, stuff like this is weird to me. I don’t think most guys can just drop one and pickup the other at a high level. But Murray could do what Wilson has done, and go to spring training.

    Of course, that raises the question of how any injury would be handled by his team. It’s probably not much of a question for Murray, but I’d bet AZ would be willing to do whatever it takes to keep him away from baseball.

    And it Murray isn’t the QB of the future – nice job with your QB drafting, Cards!

  12. Kyler , the door remains unlocked and Wide Open for you to come join the first place Oakland A’s..

  13. Keim has really backed himself into a corner with these .500 teams and very expensive players along with some poor drafts.

    Buying all yout talent from the outside without a good lower or mid part of your roster, means you’re in cap hell.


  14. lukedunphysscienceproject says:
    June 10, 2021 at 4:33 pm
    joshuadwatson says:
    June 10, 2021 at 4:22 pm
    Does anybody really believe Kyler Murray would sit out of Football to go play Double A Baseball? It took Mike Trout 2 years in the minors and 5 years in the big Leagues to accumulate $30 million in career earnings. That was after winning ROY and two MVP’s. Kyler’s worst possible offer will be more than $30 million a year. He may have leverage, but it will not be because of Baseball.

    LOL. That’s a great point if you ignore the fact that Mike Trout is now playing on a fully guaranteed $426,500,000 dollar deal.

    I didn’t ignore it, but the likelihood of Murray having anywhere near Trout’s success is a bad bet. Does he want to play for 7 years on the cheap just to find out? Opportunity costs and all. He could easily and at worst make $200 million in those 7 season vs. $30-$40 million in Baseball.

  15. Perhaps indicating that he has other options is bargaining tactic, but by also announcing that he is not 100% committed and a flight risk may have other results. A dangerous game for a guy who can’t see over the line and struggles with the pass (which is not good if you are a quarterback). He is one bang in the knee from attempting a comeback with the Lansing Lugnuts.

  16. His next injury in the NFL will be his last injury in the NFL and he’ll be off to the MLB.

  17. Maybe a running back or a cornerback could play both football and baseball, but there’s no way a starting quarterback is going to be able to spend his offseason playing baseball. A quarterback has to be all-in and certainly couldn’t skip training camp and the first part of the football season like Bo Jackson did.

  18. I think people get confused over the difference in what being a top 10 draft pick means between sports. In the NBA or even the NFL it means you’re going to be starting pretty much immediately but that’s not how baseball works. No way would he start out in the Majors, especially not after this long away from the sport. The guys who perform really well right out of the gate still spend a couple seasons or so in the minors and after that he’d have to prove himself at the MLB level before he got any kind of offer that could compete with starting NFL QB money. Realistically, he’d be close to 30 before he got paid really well in MLB assuming everything went well.

  19. Jeff Samardzija would not have been a first round pick regardless of baseball

  20. All I know, he is too short to establish any form of pocket dominance. His scrambling is more of the ‘save my life’ type than about opening up more possibilities.
    Maybe a high level ground game would compensate and lift him from average to good. Which has been the case for Mayfield.

  21. If he comes anywhere near doing what Dion Sanders did I will consider him very successful.

  22. Realistically wouldn’t he have to drive down the hard road of playing in the Minors living in cheap hotels for at least 2 years? It’s not like he’s going to come in and be a star, after a lot of work he might be an average starter someday. Doesn’t make sense unless he thinks the NFL figured him out and he’s finished there.

  23. Anyone who this he’s going to make $40 million a year on his second contract needs to look at Winston or Mariotta. He’s closer to that than his is Mahomes.

  24. I love how many posters are complaining that Murray isn’t a winner and the like…

    Who are you comparing him to ???

    Patrick Mahomes and Lamar Jackson ???

    Those guys were drafted by winning teams, with established coaches in place and had the luxury of sitting their first year on a talented Rosters with virtually everything in place.

    Murray was the #1 overall pick in the draft, with a Rookie Head Coach, in the toughest Duvision in the NFL and a Horrific roster in 2019…

    And the Cardinals have improved their win total by 3 games in each of his two seasons…

    And yet…people want to throw the bust label on him ?


  25. Comments on this seem overly harsh. No one is saying Kyler is an elite QB right now. He is a guy in year 2 who completed 67% of his passes, with 37 total TD’s to 16 total turnovers. Calling this guy a failure or a bust at this junction is too hyperbolic.

  26. Can he hit a major league curve ball? Because that’s what’s going to determine how much time he spends in the minors.
    He’s already 3 years removed from playing ball. College ball.

  27. He’s going on 24. Likely too old and pampered to go to low A where he should start. At this point he’d be lucky to advance to AAA (but if a team wants a gimmick, like Deion Sanders, that could be his schtick. Only Brian Jordan , Bo Jackson, DJ Dozier and Sanders have played in 32 or more NFL games and appeared in a MLB game in the last 50 years (and all played in the minors before jumping to MLB_. Jordan left football to play MLB full time. Bo started off in baseball, played some football, but preferred baseball. I just don’t see anything out of Murray. Want to go play baseball, try it.

  28. We used to hang out after the games by the players exit at Yankee Stadium and Deion and Mel Hall would come out looking happy and would wave to all the fans. It was pretty cool.

  29. Football doesn’t need Murray…the Cardinals may think they need him. If he doesn’t take a big step this year if I’m the Cardinals I let him go play baseball

  30. Yeah, he might have a MLB gig when he wants it but starting where? On the MLB roster, doubtful! At triple A, probably! But for how long? Wether, he can play at a high level will be determined on if he can hit a major league curve ball or slider. Hell, even a fastball. Big difference between college and the major leagues. As to earning very good money that will be determined by his performance and how you define very good.

    If I am Arizona I would let him know that we plan to draft a QB early at the next draft and are ready to move on!

  31. Samardzija, may not have been a first rounder that year but he definitely would have gone in round 2. People forget how big, strong and fast he was. He said, even after he was a couple of years into his MLB career, the Bears tried to lure him back to football.

  32. If he doesn’t show a fair amount improvement this year and win a playoff game or two, he may be looking to jump ship because Bidwell eventually needs to figure out Kiem is not a good GM and Cliff was a loser at Texas Tech meaning time to clean house and Kyler will end up being the fall guy. Not-to-mention adding a lot of expensive over hill talent praying and hoping they have a little gas left in the tank is usually not a winning formula.

  33. Make more in baseball? Do you have any idea how salaries work in MLB? You make league minimum for several years, then get a few years of arbitration where your salary is far lower than being an FA. He’d have to play for probably 6 or 7 years before he’d see anything resembling a large pay-day. That’s assuming he even pans out after a year or so in the minors to get back into the flow of the game. Backup QB money is greater than what he’d probably make in the MLB, and by the time he was eligible for a big contract he’d probably be 33 and lucky to get anyone willing to take a chance on someone that old.

  34. From the looks of it, he may end up playing baseball. If he isn’t fully focused on his job as a QB especially with all the weapons he has at his disposal, he’ll not be successful as a QB. Then the Cardinal will gladly let him try to become the face of baseball. I’m just stunned by the lack of focus at a premier job people would give up their left hands for.

  35. Absolutely talented, but seems to be very much a ‘me first’ guy. Glad he’s not my team’s QB.

  36. Kyler has potential. Reminds me of a quote from South Park in which Stan says to Jay Cutler “my dad says you might be good one day”.

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