On Monday, Kyler Murray chose football.
On Tuesday, he may have taken a step toward choosing his team.
The Oklahoma Heisman winner and NFL draft entree (and apparently no longer the A’s outfield prospect) has picked Erik Burkhardt as his agent. This decision is most notable because of the other rising football personality Burkhardt represents: new Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury.
In October, before Kingsbury had failed upward into Arizona and when he was merely a Texas Tech coach on the hot seat, the offensive mind was effusive about how great the 5-foot-10 dual-threat is — and how high he should go in the draft.
“Kyler, I mean, he’s a freak, man,” Kingsbury said, via KLBK of Lubbock, Texas. “Kyler is a freak. I’ve followed him since he was a sophomore in high school. Just think the world of him and what he can do on a football field. I’ve never seen one better in high school and he’s starting to show it now at the college level. I don’t have enough good things to say about him. He’s phenomenal.
“I’ve never seen him have a poor outing. Not one, which at quarterback is impossible to do, but he’s done it. I’d take him with the first pick of the draft if I could. I know he’s signed up to play baseball, but he is a dominant football player and I would take him with the first pick.”
Now he can. And that praise came before Kingsbury saw him again in person, when Murray tore up Texas Tech for 460 combined yards (360 passing, 100 rushing) and four combined touchdowns.
Most projections have Murray as a borderline first-round pick and in the mix with Missouri’s Drew Lock and Duke’s Daniel Jones, with Ohio State star Dwayne Haskins the consensus top quarterback. But it only takes one team’s interest to change that projection.
Josh Rosen, last year’s No. 10-overall pick, certainly complicates the Cardinals’ decision. Rosen showed glimpses of promise but rawness in his rookie season, completing 55 percent of his passes for 11 touchdowns and 14 interceptions in 13 games started.
Already the trade winds are blowing. What Rosen’s value is — and who would see him as their QB of the future — is unclear, yet Arizona may explore it.
And what the value for an undersized if electric talent who always could flip-flop back to baseball is unclear, but Arizona will explore it.