Draft Philosophies & Picks!

A bird in the hand or two in the bush? 

What measures drive your draft choices?

Production or potential? 

Aidan Hutchinson of Michigan or Travon Walker of Georgia???  It may take a while to know if the Jacksonville Jaguars got it right by choosing the latter in each scenario…

In previous years, we have shared blogs detailing a practice our staff does annually inspired by the NFL draft.  We draft our own team.  I share an alphabetical list of all returning players and request each coach return the list to me in their draft order.  Some NFL teams will draft based on need, others draft best available regardless of position, and some over or under-value certain positions.  We will see those same philosophies within our staff.  Personally, I make what we call Evidence Based Decisions when preparing my draft order.  I do not let the “measurables” cloud my decision of who makes plays on the field.  The undersized lineman who gives great energy, effort, and enthusiasm on every play and has demonstrated dependability, diligence, and passion in the weight room all winter will be drafted higher than the bigger player who lacks heart. 

Whether quoting Admiral William H McCraven’s famous University of Texas commencement speech stating, “measure a person by the size of their heart” or Samuel 16:7 “for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart,” and the heart is my number one measurable when evaluating players.

Once all the coaches have returned their draft list, we assign a score to each player based on their draft order from all coaches to create a staff draft order.  We also check each coach’s draft against the others to see what deviations we have in evaluating players.  Double-digit differences are a red flag.  For example, one coach has a player in the 8-spot while another has him at 18.  The situations need to be discussed at our first meeting to prepare for summer training to see what one coach is seeing and what the other is not.

At the end of summer Organized Team Activities and Mini Camp, we will create an initial depth chart going into Training Camp.  The last exercise is to see how our staff draft aligns with our depth chart to see if we have the best 11 on the field.

Coach Rich Alercio is available to discuss coaching philosophy, X’s & O’s, or teach his O-Line “techniques in the trenches.” Contact Coach at richalercio@gmail.com and share http://www.olineskills.com with your colleagues and friends. Thanks for supporting this blog and joining our conversations, and as always, thanks for your time! 

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