After watching the NFL scouting combine last week I thought to myself. “Why is this important?” Does a good 40 time show what kind of football player you are, or just that you’re a good athlete?
Being athletic does not always translate to being a good NFL player; there have been players who explode at the combine and boost their draft stock. Such positions include: running backs and receivers who can run the 40-yard dash in 4.3 seconds and have a great broad and vertical jump.
You can call these guys “workout warriors” at the combine. They don’t have much tape on them, but they’re gifted athletically and gain the attention of scouts, who believe they are prospects they that they can develop in the future.
I on the other hand don’t buy into the NFL combine, and believe it should not be televised because we are watching a bunch of guys work out in their underwear. Leading some scouts like the NFL Networks’ Mike Mayock and many others refer to this as the “Underwear Olympics.”
My biggest problem with it is that you’re possibly drafting guys on how well they can run, jump and lift, not on what they produced in college. I’m looking at you ghost of Al Davis and the Oakland Raiders.
Tape is the deciding factor. If a player doesn’t have a lot of good tape or didn’t produce on the field, that should be an indication that they don’t have a future in the NFL. Don’t believe me? Ask Jerry Rice.
A player who was a “workout warrior” but didn’t have good tape was University of Arizona’s running back Chris Henry who raised his draft stock that he went from a perennial unknown to being the number No. 50 pick in the 2007 NFL Draft by the Tennessee Titans. Henry is no longer in the league and was never able to live up to his potential of being a second round pick.
Further proving that the combine means absolutely nothing is Tom Brady, quarterback for the New England Patriots, who probably had the worst combine performance in the history of quarterbacks. His draft stock plummeted from being a possible second rounder to being drafted in the sixth round. Brady has become arguably the greatest quarterback of all time with three super bowl rings in five appearances.
The NFL promotes athletic ability over actual talent and causes gems to fall through the cracks and that’s unnecessary roughness.