Now that Heisman Trophy winner Kyler Murray has been drafted by the Arizona Cardinals at the 2019 NFL Draft in Nashville, Tenn., here's a look at what fans need to know about the 5'10", 207-pound Oklahoma quarterback.
He is simply capable of doing things other quarterbacks can’t. Part of it is that Murray is an exceptional athlete with the arm talent to stress a defense when his feet are set. Because of his compact frame and pure arm talent, he is biomechanically capable of making a variety of off-platform throws, moving to his left or to his right. He also has that Russell Wilson-like ability to map the chaos and make plays late in the down that other quarterbacks could never see. When he worked from the pocket, he showed the ability to work through progressions and throw with velocity and accuracy to all levels. He’s obviously capable of creating big plays as a runner.
Murray is similar in height to Wilson but in a smaller frame. Field vision is an issue. The most effective NFL passing games are designed with the pocket as a launching point — the geometry of the NFL is simply different than it is in college, due to the centered hashmarks and speed of defenders severely cutting down the available space. Being six inches shorter than a typical quarterback is, indisputably, an issue. His ceiling might be Wilson, but keep in mind: Wilson is the best sub-6-foot QB in NFL history, and even the Seahawks have had issues generating consistent offense during his career.
A creative, forward-thinking offensive architect will certainly be able to design something for Murray, who figures to at least pull off some game-changing plays on improvisation. Generating consistent offense will be a challenge, though.