Simplified System For The NFL Draft

On July 30, 2014, in Sporting News, by Buddy TB

NFLThe NFL, after consultations with leading college officials, has announced a new three way system of evaluation for college underclassmen who are thinking of declaring for the NFL Draft.  In the past there have been too many young athletes deluded into thinking that they were ready for the big time only to suffer big setbacks when they went undrafted.

The new system will allow each university five player evaluations. However, a school can apply for additional evaluations if necessary. It is hoped that the new three phase system will prove more effective for everyone involved. The old system put the players into five different categories, which led to some confusion and misunderstandings by players and coaches alike.

Under the previous system a player was placed in categories one, two, or three, or not in the first three, or undraftable. Hence the confusion. Three choices are plenty enough.

Old Miss Head Coach Hugh Freeze said, “It’s getting the NFL more involved with telling our kids the truth instead of a form letter that says you could be drafted in the top four rounds. To a kid that means first round. For us to have to tell them that that’s not the truth sometimes creates some friction from maybe someone else who’s in his ear. I’m a fan of it if it is a smart decision for that kid’s family.”

There were 98 underclassmen last year who declared for the NFL Draft. Sadly, almost 40% of them went undrafted. Not only is this not a good thing for the players themselves, but their teams and coaches also suffer the consequences. The talented SEC has been one of the hardest hit conferences in recent years by players leaving early for the NFL.

Former Cleveland Browns General Manager and now the executive director of the Senior Bowl, Phil Savage told reporters that the NFL is making this effort because a player that improves himself during that extra year in school will be a safer investment. These days we are seeing more and more players entering the NFL with slim resumes and often lacking refined technique on the playing field.

Speaking about the problem at the recent SEC Media Days, Savage said, “Some of the guys that left, they would have been stars this week.  You can’t replace the experience. Now backups don’t have a full year to catch up anymore.” That is the problem that college coaches across the country face when their top players leave school to go pro.

 

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