NFL Combine 2012: 3 Reasons Teams Should Put Little Stock in Combine Numbers
Every year when the NFL combine comes around, scouts, general managers, coaches and even fans focus too much on stuff that doesn't matter. This year will be no different, as people will once again make themselves look ridiculous by focusing too much on the combines.
For these reasons, what you will see in the combine just doesn't matter. It will not be a good way to test what kind of NFL player the prospect will be.
Not an accurate simulation
When you're a receiver and you line up for a pass, it's going to be a little tough to strip down to your underwear, somehow manage to get all of the defenders out of the way and run 40 yards as fast as you possibly can, never having to look back for the ball.
Yet somehow, this has become an extremely meaningful test that people put way too much focus on, and it doesn't stop there. You also don't run with a ball in hand, which is an essential part of being a good football player.
Defensive backs spend most of their time running backwards, or up on the line playing physical with the receiver.
What you see in the combine drills have absolutely nothing to do with what's going to happen on Sundays. Any past connections you see between strong combines and successful NFL careers is purely coincidental.
They don't test heart
The combines are all about what you can see right in front of you in an ideal situation. Sure, you want to know how fast someone is or what they can bench press, but that's not what's going to win you a close game in the fourth quarter.
How much stock do you put in the combine?
No, that comes down to pure will. Which player is more determined to do this right? The team that ends up with more of those guys will win, every single time.
There is no way of testing that at the combine. The only way to really look at that is to see what they do in games, which means their college careers are far more important.
How often is a defensive tackle going to run 40 yards? It's not going to happen very often at a meaningful time. Receivers and running backs also aren't going to need to show off their massive strength very often, as their positions are more built around avoiding the hits.
Still, we have to see them all, and some people even dwell on what we see. A prime example of this was Terrell Suggs when he left Arizona State. His slow time eventually cost him draft spots. Prior to the draft, Jarrett Bell of USA Today confirmed that.
After running the 40-yard dash in the 4.8-second range — much slower than advertised — Suggs wants a do-over.
Had Suggs (6-3, 262) clocked less than 4.6, he might have cemented his status as a top-five pick and a certified rare breed.
Suggs, then a defensive end, was drafted 10th. Now, nine years later, he is a perennial All-Pro, the reigning Defensive Player of the Year and well on his way to the Hall of Fame.
All that, and none of the first nine teams ever asked themselves, "How often does a defensive end run 40 yards?"
We see this too often. Someone fails to do great at a test that's at best vaguely relevant for their position, and his draft stock plummets. Examples such as Suggs don't seem to change the mindsets of anyone.
What is the duplicate article?
Why is this article offensive?
Where is this article plagiarized from?
Why is this article poorly edited?