NEPD Editor: Oliver Thomas
January is a month of divergence for the NFL. Eight teams are left in the Super Bowl hunt; 24 others have cleared out lockers and dispersed for the offseason. But before long, all 32 will be back in the same lane, preparing for the 2014 NFL draft.
It’s a process of personnel evaluation from now through May. There will be all-star games, combines and pro days to gauge a player’s value in the same setting as their peers. Yet in actuality, 90 percent of their value has already been determined.
It’s been determined by the game film and the eyes viewing it.
Now big boards and positional rankings must be taken with a grain of salt. It ultimately comes down to preference, need, and fit.
One area where that rings especially true is at wide receiver.
Over the last three drafts, 90 receivers have been selected by NFL teams – including the Cleveland Browns’ compensatory pick of Josh Gordon in 2012. Of those 90, 36 were chosen within the first three rounds, netting an average of 12 annually.
That trend is expected to continue this spring. (more…)