Nearly eight years ago, then-49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick created a major stir by wearing a Dolphins hat. (Oh, simpler times.) Last night, Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray created a stir (albeit not as major) with his hat choice at a Phoenix Suns basketball game.
Murray wore an Oakland A’s hat. That’s significant because the A’s made Murray the ninth overall pick in the 2018 draft. Murray seriously considered playing baseball over football, before deciding in early 2019 to opt for football.
In November, Murray said he misses baseball, and that he’d like to play both sports. That’s simply impractical, but it’s impossible to rule out the possibility that Murray will wake up one day and decide that he’d like to return to baseball.
The vast majority of pro athletes don’t have the leverage that comes from the ability to player another sport at the highest level. If/when Murray decides (whether because he doesn’t like his NFL contract or because he’s simply had his fill of football) to leave football for baseball, he can do it — and the A’s or some other team surely would embrace him.
Currently, Murray would have to cut a check to the Cardinals in the amount of $11.6 million, if he’d walk away. Next year, the bonus forfeiture would become only $5.8 million. The next year (barring a contract extension), Murray can leave the Cardinals with no financial consequence.
It’s highly unlikely that it will happen. For most players, however, it’s an impossibility. For Murray, it’s at least on the radar screen.