NFL Draft 2019: Kyler Murray vs. Last 5 Top-Pick Quarterbacks

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It is the most important position in the game and in 31 of the 83 NFL Drafts, a quarterback has been selected first.

Seven of the past 10 first overall picks have been signal-callers and former Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray is being tipped to follow in the footsteps of players such as John Elway, Troy Aikman and Peyton Manning on Thursday.

The Arizona Cardinals hold the top pick for the 2019 NFL Draft and will know that many of the recent quarterbacks taken in that slot have been a success at the next level.

With the help of Opta, we look at how Murray stacks up to the last five QBs that heard NFL commissioner Roger Goodell read their name first on draft night - Cam Newton, Andrew Luck, Jameis Winston, Jared Goff and Baker Mayfield.

 

 

Cam Newton (2011)

Like Murray, Newton was a Heisman Trophy winner in college and the Carolina Panthers saw enough of him in his one and only year at Auburn to be convinced he was their future.

Newton only had three years of college experience before the 2011 draft and, with 2,908 passing yards, he had the fewest of anyone in this group. However, 2,854 of those came after he transferred to Auburn, with Newton completing just six passes across two years as a back-up at Florida.

Even in limited action, Newton's 24 rushing touchdowns were more than Mayfield (21), Murray (13), Winston (seven), Luck (seven) and Goff (one) managed.

 

 

Andrew Luck (2012)

Considered one of the greatest prospects ever to emerge from college, the Indianapolis Colts were so sure about Luck they let Manning head into free agency in 2012.

Luck was an incredibly polished passer at Stanford, completing 67 per cent of his throws, though Murray (67.4 per cent) was even more accurate.

While he only had 163 carries across his three seasons, Luck averaged 5.9 yards on the ground - a figure only Murray (7.1 yards) can better among this half dozen.

 

 

Jameis Winston (2015)

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers opted for Winston over Marcus Mariota four years ago, with the former having put together an impressive two-season resume at Florida State.

Only Mayfield, Murray and Luck had a better completion percentage than Winston (66 per cent).

The concern over Winston was that he did not take care of the football, though, and his 28 interceptions trailed only Mayfield and Goff (both 30) - and those two played more collegiate seasons.

 

 

Jared Goff (2016)

The Los Angeles Rams traded up in 2016 to land Goff, whose college numbers at California were not as impressive as the other five mentioned here.

Goff had the worst completion percentage (62.3 per cent), fewest yards-per-attempt in the air (7.8) - compared to Murray's 10.4 - and the joint-most interceptions.

While Newton, Winston, Mayfield and Murray all won Heisman Trophies, neither Goff nor Luck won college football's most coveted prize.

 

 

Baker Mayfield (2017)

It was Mayfield, rather than Sam Darnold, Josh Allen or Josh Rosen, who Cleveland deemed to be the best quarterback prospect of a loaded class.

The man who Murray replaced as Oklahoma's starting QB is the only one on the list to have completed four years at college. He was the most accurate passer of the six, completing 68.5 per cent of his 1,497 attempts.

Mayfield threw for the most yards (14,607) and touchdowns (131), and though he also attempted the most rushes (404), he averaged only 2.3 yards on the ground - far fewer than Murray (7.1), Luck (5.9) and Newton (5.6).