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Old 04-20-2013   #1
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Default Daniel Jeremiah: NFL Draft: Prospect sequence list drives team decisions

2013 NFL Draft: Prospect sequence list drives team decisions
By Daniel Jeremiah, Analyst, NFL.com and NFL Network


In the media, we often focus on ranking NFL draft prospects by position. But that can be misleading, especially when taken in context of what happens in NFL team headquarters. It's the overall sequence, regardless of position, that matters most.

Here's how it works in draft meetings: After each scout reads his report on a particular guy, he is asked to integrate the player into the entire prospect population. For instance, after everyone who watched and wrote up West Virginia wide receiver Tavon Austin discussed their report, the leader of the meetings (typically the personnel director or general manager) would ask that group of scouts which player they rated higher, Austin or Notre Dame tight end Tyler Eifert.

These comparison discussions can take anywhere from 5-10 minutes before the player eventually gets slotted on the master sequence list. This process is run almost like a mini-election. Seven scouts vote for Austin, four scouts vote for Eifert. Austin wins. Next up, North Carolina guard Jonathan Cooper six votes, Austin five votes. Cooper wins. Therefore, Austin is sequenced in between Cooper and Eifert on the master list.

In order to be properly prepared for these meetings, each scout must formulate his own sequence list of prospects that he's studied. When called upon to pick between two prospects, you can't just throw out a name off the top of your head. You have to consult your own sequence list constantly during these draft meetings. Here's my sequence list for the top 50 players in the 2013 NFL Draft:

Quote:
1) Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M...
2) Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan...
3) Sharrif Floyd, DT, Florida...
4) Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah...
5) Dion Jordan, DE/OLB, Oregon...
6) Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma...
7) Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama...
8) Jonathan Cooper, OG, North Carolina...
9) Tavon Austin, WR, West Virginia...
10) Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame: Eifert has excellent speed, strong hands and a huge catching radius. The Notre Dame product must continue to improve as a blocker, but he should be able to make an immediate impact as a high-volume pass catcher.

11) Kenny Vaccaro, S, Texas...
12) Chance Warmack, OG, Alabama...
13) Ziggy Ansah, DE, BYU...
14) Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri...
15) Sylvester Williams, DT, North Carolina...
16) Jarvis Jones, OLB, Georgia...
17) Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State...
18) Alec Ogletree, ILB, Georgia: Ogletree carries some risk because of his off-field issues, but he's an explosive linebacker with outstanding cover skills. His background as a safety is evident in the tape I studied. He can mirror tight ends all over the field. He does need to do a better job of using his hands to take on/shed blocks, but that can be taught.
19) Justin Pugh, OL, Syracuse...
20) Keenan Allen, WR, California: I love the way Allen attacks the football in the air and he has a great feel for working in zones. While his game isn't predicated on speed, his slow 40 time was still cause for some concern.

21) Jesse Williams, DT, Alabama
22) Barkevious Mingo, DE, LSU
23) Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia
24) D.J. Fluker, OT, Alabama
25) Cordarrelle Patterson, WR, Tennessee
26) D.J. Hayden, CB, Houston
27) Zach Ertz, TE, Stanford
28) John Cyprien, S, Florida International
29) Manti Te'o, ILB, Notre Dame
30) Matt Elam, S, Florida

31) Tank Carradine, DE, Florida State
32) Bjoern Werner, DE, Florida State
33) Menelik Watson, OT, Florida State
34) Jamar Taylor, CB, Boise State
35) Kevin Minter, ILB, LSU
36) Arthur Brown, ILB, Kansas State
37) D.J. Swearinger, S, South Carolina
38) Eddie Lacy, RB, Alabama
39) Damontre Moore, DE, Texas A&M
40) Eric Reid, S, LSU

41) Terron Armstead, OT, Arkansas-Pine Bluff
42) DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Clemson
43) Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington
44) Datone Jones, DE, UCLA
45) Robert Woods, WR, USC
46) Margus Hunt, DE, SMU
47) Justin Hunter, WR, Tennessee
48) Kyle Long, OG, Oregon
49) Kawann Short, DT, Purdue
50) Jonathan Franklin, RB, UCLA
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Old 04-20-2013   #2
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Default Re: Daniel Jeremiah: NFL Draft: Prospect sequence list drives team decisions

It still comes down to individual opinions on players. We have repeatedly seen on this MB alone how several people can watch college and NFL players and have different views. I doubt all scouts agree 100% on player ratings. I cannot remember anyone's mock being 100% the same as the draft actually goes. That is part of the interest for me.
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Old 04-20-2013   #3
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Default Re: Daniel Jeremiah: NFL Draft: Prospect sequence list drives team decisions

Ogletree would be a good fit for us.
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Old 04-20-2013   #4
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Default Re: Daniel Jeremiah: NFL Draft: Prospect sequence list drives team decisions

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Originally Posted by badboy View Post
It still comes down to individual opinions on players. We have repeatedly seen on this MB alone how several people can watch college and NFL players and have different views. I doubt all scouts agree 100% on player ratings. I cannot remember anyone's mock being 100% the same as the draft actually goes. That is part of the interest for me.
One of the reasons I like the Texans Talk mock (even though I didn't get to participate this year) is that although it's not "realistic" in some ways, it's more realistic in others.

Every team out there has their own list of guys ranked in their own sequence. No two teams will be alike. During the draft, some teams get slammed for who they pick and when they pick them but that's just the difference between how that team had guys sequenced (and how they think OTHER teams had these guys sequenced) vs. how the pundits had the guys sequenced. Just because the pundits slam someone for making a reach that doesn't mean it was a reach. There could have been several teams that had that particular player sequenced the same way as the team that got slammed.

Every year, the draft goes on and there are guys who the pundits have ranked high but who fall and fall and fall right out of the draft. That just shows that the pundits sequence was way different than any of the professionals not that any of the teams made a mistake.

When people create mocks, they're just working from a single sequence and how they expect guys to be valued. It misses that randomness from the differences between all the different player lists.

And it also ignores that teams perceive their own need differently from how outside sources perceive them. They look at players and grade them differently based on if they think they'll "fit" what they do. There are guys who are on the "master" sequence who aren't even on many teams' board because they see them as a bad fit or they detect other red flags.

I guess all I'm trying to say is that it's a beautiful and chaotic process and I love it.
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Old 04-20-2013   #5
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Default Re: Daniel Jeremiah: NFL Draft: Prospect sequence list drives team decisions

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Ogletree would be a good fit for us.
Except for one little thing!
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Old 04-20-2013   #6
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Default Re: Daniel Jeremiah: NFL Draft: Prospect sequence list drives team decisions

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Ogletree would be a good fit for us.
As Vinny pointed out to me, Ogletree's character concerns probably exclude him from consideration by the Texans unless he drops into a much lower round.
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Old 04-20-2013   #7
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Default Re: Daniel Jeremiah: NFL Draft: Prospect sequence list drives team decisions

Ogletree is not even a good player. I don't care about his character concerns. He's going to struggle on the field.
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Old 04-21-2013   #8
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Default Re: Daniel Jeremiah: NFL Draft: Prospect sequence list drives team decisions

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Ogletree is not even a good player. I don't care about his character concerns. He's going to struggle on the field.
I don't know about that, Rey.

This is a guy who had missed time in each of his first two years at Georgia and also had to handle a position switch from safety to LB.
He still needs to grow into the new physique and the position.

His value being a former safety was seen on the field.
Some people want to slot him at the 43 WILL; I'd rather see him as a MIKE (either 43 or 34) or a 43 SAM.
His coverage skill should allow him to be a three-down LB.
I would rather see him in the second round though; and that is even before considering his baggage.
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