Plenty of scouts and evaluators are having difficulty providing a pro comparison for upcoming NFL draft prospect Kyler Murray, but his college head coach has one idea.
"I almost compare him - I know this is high praise - but I mean, it's almost kind of like (he has) a Barry Sanders effect," Oklahoma's Lincoln Riley told NBC Sports' Peter King. "'Yes, I'm small for the position, but I'm so athletic and so smart that I just rarely take big shots.'"
Riley isn't making the comparison considering a position, but rather points to other attributes that give Murray a similar gamebreaker quality to that of the Hall of Fame running back.
"His speed, obviously, is off the charts," he said. "He'll be the fastest quarterback in the NFL by a long shot the day he walks in the door. But on top of that, I think the things as a runner and athletically he brings, and his elite quickness, will be important. And then he just has a feel. He knows how to play the game. He knows when the moments are big and he needs to strain to get a first down. He's not going to take unnecessary hits."
The former Sooners pivot is the most interesting prospect in the 2019 NFL Draft - there aren't many NFL quarterbacks listed under six feet tall. Murray was selected ninth overall by the Oakland Athletics in the 2018 MLB Draft, then went on to win the Heisman Trophy at Oklahoma. Although he was already taken by the A's, he decided to pursue his NFL dream and forgo a career in baseball.
Despite questions over Murray's height and commitment to football, Riley expects the 2018 Heisman Trophy winner to be a high first-round pick in April.
"I will be shocked," Riley said, "if five players get their name called on draft day before Kyler."