Kenneth Murray was selected with the 23rd overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft. The Chargers traded both the team's second and third-round picks to move back into the first round to take the exciting, athletic Oklahoma linebacker.
The Chargers needed a downhill linebacker that would play physically and hit ball carriers hard. In a perfect world that is what the Chargers would have gotten and it would have made a huge mark on the defensive side of the ball.
Instead, the Chargers got a linebacker who doesn't really fit well in Brandon Staley's defense and plays poorly as a result. Murray is bad in pass coverage and seemingly always makes the wrong reads in the run game and has looked borderline unplayable at times.
But because he is a first-round pick that the team poured so many resources into he has gotten chance after chance. That might not be the case in 2023 after the Chargers declined his fifth-year option and took linebacker Daiyan Henley in the third round.
If Murray looks like the same player that he has thus far in his career it won't be very long until Staley calls on the rookie linebacker to start next to Eric Kendricks. The Chargers are trying to win a Super Bowl this season, not protect Murray's feelings.