At the NFL combine and pro day evaluations, they have stop watches, tape measures, scales and wonderlick tests to evaluate athletes. But what about the intangibles that make a football player?
Some say that these combines and pro days are nothing more than a beauty pageant and you need to watch game film before investing millions in these players. The last few weeks have been filled with ever changing mock drafts based on this 40-yard dash time or completion percentage.
In a league like the SEC when every team has great athletes, you need football players to go undefeated and win the national championship and this years Auburn Tigers had plenty of football players.
Today was Pro Day at Auburn and you can read all kinds of statistics on the Auburn players looking to be drafted.
Here is a rating of "Intangibles" on a scale of 1-10 (with 10 being the best) for the top Tigers hoping to hear their name called on draft day.
Plain and simple, Cam Newton is a winner.
He won back-to-back national championships at Blinn Junior College and Auburn. He willed his team to win, gave his team confidence, and made everyone around him better. Whether making a laser like pass on third or fourth down, or converting another third and three, Cam Newton does whatever it takes to win.
Gus Mahlzhan raved about how quickly he grasped the offense and understood what the defenses were doing on the field.
I want Nick Fairley on my team. He made big play after big play. Look at the sack and fumble he made in the Iron Bowl, the key sacks in the LSU game, or the big plays in the Georgia game.
Nick Fairley is a winner, as in winning the BCS national championship and the Lombardi Award.
Why not a 10? Nick Fairley does commit some silly penalties and seemed to take plays off last year before going full throttle all the time this year.
I know Auburn fans will say he committed at least one off-sides a game but he improved greatly his senior year. He played on a high school state championship team in Arkansas and went out a champion at Auburn.
You have to be football savvy to come in as a true freshman and start at tackle in the SEC as Ziemba did.
Nicknamed "Smooth" Darvin Adams has a knack for coming up with the big catch. Remember the crucial third down catch against Kentucky when it seemed like Adams stole the ball in the air from a Kentucky defensive back to save the Tiger's perfect season? Remember the fourth down catch he made in the Iron Bowl to keep a drive alive?
Adams was also a stalwart on special teams his entire career at Auburn and even filled in as a punt returner when his team needed him.
Only thing that keeps me from giving Adams a 10 is a few drops in the SEC championship game and BCS title game.
The son of a coach, Ryan Pugh was the signal caller for the Auburn offensive line that may have been the best in Auburn history.
Although a center, Pugh was thrust into the starting lineup at tackle as a true freshman against the Florida Gators in the Swamp and the Tigers went on to win the game.
I was hard pressed to think of a single time in four years that Pugh made a mistake and the only one that comes to mind was a holding call in the end zone that resulted in a safety and two points for Mississippi State in the famous 3-2 Tiger victory in Starkville.
Desmond Washington improved his chances by running tremendous 40 times. But what about the intangibles?
He gets credit for playing both defensive back and filled in admirably at safety last year when needed. He also returns kickoffs and took one to the house versus Ole Miss. But, with all that talent, he was out of position several times at defensive back and got burned for big gains or scores.
Josh Bynes will most likely not get drafted and will have to go the free agent route. He is not the fastest linebacker and his lack of speed hurt Auburn as teams would try to get him in single coverage with a speedy back or slot receiver.
Josh Bynes is a football player. He was the quarterback of the Auburn defense as he called the plays and made sure players were lined up properly. He made several big stops.
I remember him leaping over the top against Ole Miss and perfectly time his leap to stop the Rebels on a key fourth down quarterback sneak. He was an iron man playing almost every play against Northwestern in the Outback Bowl.
Kodi Burns came to Auburn as a hot shot high school quarterback and left a champion as a blocking receiver who made several key catches. It was only fitting that Burns scored the first touchdown for the Tigers in the BCS title game.
As Auburn fans know, when Kodi Burns was beaten out by Chris Todd for the starting quarterback job in 2009, he did not pout, but asked Coach Chizik to address the team and many think that was the start of the run to the national championship in 2010.
Wes Byrum was "Mr. Clutch" in his career at Auburn. As a freshman, he had to kick not only one, but two game winning field goals against Florida in the Swamp to beat Urban Meyer after Meyer called a time out just as he kicked the first game winner. He added game winning kicks against Clemson in overtime, Kentucky on the road, and of course, against Oregon in the BCS title game.
Byrum was not perfect, he suffered through a sophomore slump, but when the game was on the line, he always came through with the winning kick.
Also, don't forget his perfect onsides kick and recovery against Georgia to flip the field to start the second half and turned around momentum as the Tigers scored and never looked back to beat the Dogs.
Antoine Carter or "Hot" made what may be remembered as the biggest play in the 2010 season when he chased down Mark Ingram from behind and punched out the ball and turned what may have been a game clinching touchdown for bitter rival Alabama in the Iron Bowl to a touchback.
When a player refuses to quit on a play, but keeps running down the field, it inspires the entire team.
Carter also made several big stops against the Ducks in the BCS title game.
Injuries may have slowed Carter, but he did not seem to reach his potential at Auburn and if he can turn it on every play in the NFL, he may be a great pick up for a team.