Kenneth Murray leaves Chargers a parting gift thanks to Titans' frivolous spending

Los Angeles Chargers v New York Jets
Los Angeles Chargers v New York Jets / Dustin Satloff/GettyImages

There were high expectations for Kenneth Murray when he was drafted by the Chargers. Not only was Murray a first-round pick for the Bolts, but the team traded both its second and third-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft to move up and take him.

Unfortunately for the athletically gifted former Oklahoma Sooner, things never quite worked out in LA. Typical rookie mistakes coupled with a new head coach in his second year who didn't know how to use him delayed Murray's development. By the time he was a full-time starter in year three and four, there were too many holes in his game to count.

Many fans expected Murray to leave this offseason and that is exactly what he is doing as it was reported that he is signing a two-year deal with the Tennessee Titans once free agency officially opens. Murray leaving the Chargers is not surprising in the slightest... but the price point is.

Kenneth Murray leaves Chargers on a massive overpay by the Tennessee Titans

If you ever need an example of draft priors doing the heavy lifting for a player in free agency just reference this Murray deal. While a two-year deal worth $7.75 million per year is not groundbreaking money, it is an expensive price to pay for a linebacker who has been outright bad in his career.

Heck, Kyzir White and Drue Tranquill signed for a combined $6 million on their two one-year deals after leaving the Chargers. Both of those linebackers were coming off of career years, while Murray has never had a positive year in his career.

But because he is a first-round pick and he has a remarkable athletic profile, a team like the Titans was willing to take the risk. If Murray was a fourth-round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft but was the exact same player then he probably doesn't get the same kind of contract in free agency.

This is all good news for the Chargers. General manager Joe Hortiz loves compensatory picks and as it stands right now, the Austin Ekeler signing is counteracted by the Chargers signing Gus Edwards. But with Murray getting much more than expected, the Chargers are currently in line to receive at least a sixth-round compensatory pick.

At least Murray is leaving the Chargers with something positive, as there were not many positive moments when he was actually with the team. It is hard to pinpoint what the Titans saw in Murray to offer such a large contract but at the end of the day, it helps the Chargers. That is all that matters.