Kyler Murray's Three Options With A's After NFL Scouting Combine Decision

A's position players are due to report to spring training in exactly one week, yet no one seems to have any idea whether Kyler Murray will be there.

We found out Thursday that Oakland's 2018 first-round draft pick will attend the NFL Scouting Combine at the end of the month, which seemingly signals bad news for the A's. However, there are a few scenarios in which the two-sport star still could choose professional baseball.

NBC Sports California spoke to a former MLB general manager, who said there is no major league rule preventing Murray from leaving spring training for the NFL Combine and then returning afterward. It would be up to the A's and Murray to come to an agreement on such an arrangement.

The former GM also pointed out that Murray is not necessarily obligated to attend major league camp since he is not on the A's 40-man roster. While he received an invitation to big league camp, he theoretically could just show up for A's minor league camp, which begins in March, after the NFL combine.

Another thing to keep in mind is that, even if Murray did pursue an NFL career, the A's would retain his baseball rights. That means if his NFL career didn't work out, Murray could return to baseball down the road in Oakland's organization.

So, what does all of this mean for the A's? The first scenario seems most likely, with Murray reporting for big-league camp Feb. 15, leaving Feb. 26 for the NFL combine, and then returning March 4. This obviously wouldn't be ideal for the A's, but they really don't have much of a choice at this point.

Murray's NFL draft stock always could fall following the combine, particularly if he didn't measure well. Football scouts already have expressed concerns over his small frame and lack of height, though he's still projected as a first-round pick in just about every mock draft. If that were to change, Murray would be much more likely to stick with baseball.

The second scenario makes sense on paper, but the optics would be terrible. If Murray really skipped big-league camp, it clearly would signal that football is his top priority, even if he showed up for minor league camp after the NFL combine.

[RELATED: Murray will participate in scouting combine]

The third scenario is why the A's would be wise to maintain a positive relationship with Murray, even if he were to pursue an NFL career. Oakland would retain his baseball rights, and he still could have an A's career after football.

Right now, Murray is being pulled in several different directions - by his agent, by scouts, by the A's, and by his family. The A's want him to commit to baseball. NFL teams will want him to commit fully to football. Obviously, he wants to keep his options open as long as possible, but time is running out.

Copyright CSNBY - CSN BAY
Contact Us