Murray off to NFL draft, but can still consider A’s
The Oklahoma Sooners quarterback and reigning Heisman Trophy winner has given himself the option to choose the NFL over MLB, where he has a contract with the Oakland Athletics that includes a $4.66 million signing bonus.
A source told ESPN’s Adam Schefter that Murray actually submitted the paperwork Friday.
The A’s, who selected Murray with the ninth pick in the 2018 MLB draft, understood and supported his decision to enter the NFL draft, sources told ESPN’s Jeff Passan. The choice to enter the NFL draft does not preclude Murray from choosing baseball, sources said, but it does put additional pressure on Oakland to offer Murray a major league contract with additional money in hopes of dissuading the outfield prospect from pursuing a football career.
In just his first season as a starter, Murray threw for 4,361 yards and 42 touchdowns and ran for another 1,001 yards and 12 touchdowns in leading the Sooners to the College Football Playoff semifinals this year.
While Murray has entered his name into the NFL draft, he still has 72 hours during which he can chose to pull out.
Top A’s executives, a marketing executive from MLB and others met Sunday afternoon with Murray in Dallas, sources told ESPN, to better understand what it would take for Murray to forgo a football career and to sell him on playing baseball full time.
Pro Football Hall of Famer Deion Sanders, who played in both the NFL and MLB during his career, knows what he would do if he were Murray.
“If I was in his shoes, I’m picking up the baseball bat and I’m not looking back,” Sanders told ESPN.
Information from ESPN’s Jeff Passan was used in this report.