NFL trade rumors: Insider has 'doubt' about Eagles' Kyler Murray interest

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Insider offers skeptical look at Eagles-Murray trade talk originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

Eagles fans online like to joke about how the Birds are always linked to any player rumored to be on the trade block, regardless of fit or price. Sometimes they'll even make the joke about players in different leagues entirely.

But when Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray's situation in Arizona once again started to sound rocky late last week, with Murray reportedly looking for a new contract before next season begins, the potential of a trade started working its way through football fans' heads - and the Eagles, who are still positioning themselves in pursuit of a franchise QB, were an obvious connection.

Would Howie Roseman be interested in putting those magic trade fingers to work in pursuit of Murray, the soon-to-be 25-year-old quarterback who makes transcendent plays but is also small and has played poorly down the stretch in multiple seasons?

MORE: A couple defensive studs, Round 2 trade in Eagles-only mock

Don't jump the gun just yet,  says NBC Sports' NFL insider Peter King.

King didn't specifically cite sources over the weekend when he and Mike Florio chatted about Murray trade options, but he's one of the most plugged-in insiders in football. When King speaks, it's coming from a guy who knows what's going on around the league.

Here's King's take on the Eagles' interest in Murray:

"FLORIO: I would throw the Eagles on top of [the Murray interest], also, because they were on the fringes of the whole Deshaun Watson conversation and never really swooped in, in part because maybe Watson didn't want to go there.

"[...]

"Whoever it is that you have [at QB], Kyler Murray's not so great that you're going to scrap your plan."

"KING: And I think that's exactly where the Philadelphia Eagles would land. We could argue right now that, if we were doing this last October 20, you'd laugh if I said, 'Well the Eagles don't think that Kyler Murray is a big upgrade over Jalen Hurts.' But we've got more evidence than just seven or eight weeks at the start of last year when Kyler Murray, arguably, was the MVP. 

"And so I think you have to look at where the Eagles are, where Nick Sirianni would be, and you just have to ask him, 'Do you want a guy who's been hurt some, who's small, who you don't know how durable he's going to be long-term - is that what you want to do?' 

"Look, I like Kyler Murray. I'd like to have him for most teams in the NFL. [...] But it absolutely is not a slam dunk. [...] I doubt sincerely that the Philadelphia Eagles would really mortgage all of the gains that they've made in draft choices and get rid of Jalen Hurts and add Kyler Murray. That's my gut feeling."

Very interesting. "I doubt sincerely" feels pretty darn concrete.

And frankly, I'm not surprised. As much as I like watching Murray play, and as much as I'd like to see the Eagles figure out their franchise QB question mark, I don't think this is the right time or the right player.

Giving Jalen Hurts another year to figure things out, on a very cheap second-round draft pick salary, while carrying draft assets into 2023 is a great plan. Roseman has positioned the Eagles to have plenty of control and options after this season.

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And I just don't think Murray is good enough to be the one you go all-in on.

He might be, eventually! But right now? I'm not sold, even though I agree he'd certainly be an upgrade over Hurts.

The problem is that you'd also have to pay Murray immediately, and that - on top of surrendering draft picks that could fill other holes on this Eagles roster - could stunt this team's growth significantly. I don't see his talent level being the Aaron Rodgers-type where you go, "Get me the QB and we'll figure it out." I think you need to have some stuff already figured out with Murray as your guy.

My best guess: Murray remains a Cardinal, gets a deal just before training camp, and has a good-not-great season while the Eagles keep their eyes open on bigger and better options.