2019 NFL Draft Prospect Report: Byron Murphy
Name: Byron Murphy
Listed Height: 5’11
Listed Weight: 190
Strengths: Murphy is a cerebral corner with top level coverage skills. He mostly played in bail, but showed he could get knee bend and function with controlled feet in a backpedal. Murphy’s best comes when processing the field from zone coverage. He shows understanding of his spacing in zone, as he receives players entering his zone, covers, and passes them off flawlessly. His reactionary quickness vs route breaks pops off the screen, as he routinely recognizes and anticipates route combinations that he picked up from tape study. He quickly diagnoses throw direction and easily reads the QBs eyes and upper body to get into coverage position. Murphy is a fluid mover and is quick footed in his transitions, allowing him to effortlessly pattern match with the ability to stay hip to hip after opening the gates. He is quick from the snap into bail and covers ground at a good pace. Gets good enough acceleration out of his transitions to get on the hip of the WR and can recover well vs a smaller degree of separation. He navigates around the field with functional play speed. He has the linear and lateral acceleration to stay connected vs most WRs and shows that he can be physical in the stem. He is extremely instinctive in coverage and has impressive ball skills. Consistently swipes at the ball when in range and shows that he can gear down and track back while the ball is still in the air. Murphy will get his hands dirty as a tackler, as he is more than willing to attack the ball carrier and is a violent on-ball hitter for the position.
Weaknesses: Murphy has average length and body mass through his frame that puts him at a disadvantage when matched up vs a big body. He can get boxed out on 50/50 throws and has some issues combating hand moves at route breaks. He needs to be more proactive in his jam at the line of scrimmage and has a small amount of press strength. Has average overall long speed.
Overview and Insights: Murphy is a highly intelligent corner with elite level zone coverage skills and a functional ability in man coverage or in the slot. He is a high effort, high motor player who possesses the x-factor on the field because of his dominant presence on a down to down basis. Because of his processing, movement skills, acceleration, and overall urgency, i believe that Byron Murphy will be a top 15 corner at the peak of his career and fits in a zone system.
Round Projection: First Round
Ideal Fits: Redskins, Panthers, Raiders, Buccaneers, Eagles
Pro Comparison: Kyle Fuller
Scout: Taylor Moser