Tampa, FLA – Proper guidance is clearly necessary for collegiate football players to advance to the next level. Knowing the do’s and don’ts are essential to avoid the pitfalls of being excluded from the process.
In the presence of NFL scouts from all across the League at the Regional Combine Invitational (RCI), several players (primarily from the offensive skill position) were led in the wrong direction by their advisors.
Why did all but two wide receivers choose not to run the 40?
Anthony Mahoungou (Purdue) and Austin Proehl (North Carolina) were the two wide receivers who ran they 40s, and did well.
The RCI prospects were informed that they did not have to run the 40 if they liked the numbers they accumulated from their Pro Day. Prospects were also told that if they wanted to wait for their upcoming Pro Day to run their 40, that was acceptable as well.
Psychology at its best.
The problem is that if a prospect does not take full advantage of the opportunity being presented, the prospect does not appear to be serious about playing in the NFL, let alone serious about competing.
“Just coming out here…I wanted to show them (NFL scouts) that I wanted to compete,” said South Florida defensive end Mike Love. “Even though my Pro Day is Monday, I wanted to compete and not just come here and not do all the drills. I came out here and I did my thing. It was a good feeling knowing they (NFL scouts) were all here watching so I feel good about Monday.”
Depending on the player, the average number of NFL scouts attending a Pro Day is thirteen. For most prospects, only five scouts may be in attendance at a Pro Day session, and it is unlikely that every prospect will be on the radar of every scout.
Let’s weigh the options: A Pro Day with limit representation of few NFL scouts or a League-wide representation with all 32 clubs at the RCI.
Which one makes the most sense to showcase an NFL prospect’s talent?
It’s a no brainer.
And, at the RCI, not only are team scouts present, NFL team personnel (e.g. directors of scouting) are in attendance as well. These are legitimate decision makers who will be in the NFL war rooms during the NFL Draft.
Besides, many of the NFL scouts were not interested in watching those prospects who bypass the 40 because the competitive nature of those prospects comes into question.
In fact, many of the scouts are completely turned off.
Of course, all the prospects are not on the radar of every NFL team. However, by declining to do certain drills, a prospect misses the opportunity to generate the interest of teams that originally might not have been interested.
“If you are here, why hold back? You are already here, just jump in with both feet,” said one prominent NFL personnel director.
These NFL prospects are not high profile athletes. Thus the reason why they have been invited to this NFL orchestrated event. They needed to do everything to prove themselves.
Some of these prospects have been given poor advice, and they have severely reduced their chances to get that coveted phone call after the selection process.
Skipping the 40 is a tremendous mistake, and it can prove to be costly. Not only is it a complete disservice to a prospect, it is disrespectful to the RCI.