Scouting the NFL Draft is a continuously evolving process

2021 NFL Draft (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
2021 NFL Draft (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /
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Jerry Jeudy 2020 NFL Draft
Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images /

Weighing everything in a scouting grade

So, we’ve mentioned how some production analytics should probably have some incorporation into a final grade, and that film is likely where the majority of the grade comes from. The other part of the equation is the athletic testing.

A lot of analysts are incorporating RAS (relative athletic score) into account when grading. Better athletes, assuming good film, is always smart to bet on in the NFL Draft.

So, now we’ve got some weight placed on athletic testing, some on production, and most on film. But, we aren’t done in terms of weighing the grading scale.

It’s important to weigh the most important traits higher than others. Yes, sometimes with 10 traits on a scale it’s easier to put everything out of 10, but that’s not how it should work. As we talked about on the first slide, accuracy, decision making, and playmaking ability should probably be weighted more on the film score for quarterbacks than anything else.

Regarding the running back position, more weight should be placed on their abilities in the passing game than ever before. Yes, vision, contact balance, and lateral agility (all used to make defenders miss) are important too, but in such a pass-heavy league, contributing to all three downs is important.

As a wide receiver, creating separation is important, but it’s important to note that separation is different for receivers. Route runners create separation with great releases, crisp routes, attacking blind spots, and eye manipulation. Bigger receivers use their size and strength to separate. Speed demons will use their speed to their advantage to win.

Whatever the position, there are dominating traits that should carry more weight. Also, the film should likely weigh most in the final grade, but athleticism and production deserve a seat at the table.