The Time of the Year - NFL Combine Prep

This is the time of the year when college football stars and wannabes flock to gurus to get ready for the NFL. For those of you who do not know it the combine is the annual rite of passage to the next level, the glorious world of the NFL. Some have termed it a meat market, which is probably a good analogy. Probably 70% of the combine has nothing to do with football. The physical tests, headlined by the gold standard 40 yard dash are supposed to be an indication of the player’s athletic ability. The players now spend the six weeks leading to the combine doing combine training. Combine training is nothing more than preparing for the tests. Most of the players are wasting their time and their agent’s money. For everyone who improves their times on the various tests there are ten who do not. They would have been better off staying with what got them invited to the combine in the first place. Many teams do interviews with the players. Part of combine prep is rehearsing the interviews. Let get real here! This has taken on a life of it’s own with little relationship to the ability to play the game. Teams would be much smarter to devise truly functional tests to assess what they think needs to be assessed for the player to play in their system. (More on my ideas on this in another blog)


At 2/3/06, 10:09 AM, Anonymous Patrick McHugh said...

Vern: what is interesting about this post to me is the combine seems similar to the College Admissions process, at least for those who aspire to the top schools. That process seems to be equally artificial as kids now take SAT prep classes, get enormous amounts of help on their essays, and seem to spend a lot of time resume building in high school rather then really pursuing genuine interests. The colleges seem no better in trying to select the best kids for their schools. A whole industry has arisen and a lot of time has been wasted by families and kids -- who only get four years of high school -- trying to get into so-called "presitgous" colleges.


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