Scouting the NFL Draft for Dummies

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Amateur Scouting & Draft Season

If you’re our kind of person, this is your favorite time of the year. Baseball is on the horizon, and the NCAA tournament is in full swing, but the real March madness for us is scouting for the NFL Draft.

Like most of you, scouting is a hobby for me. I have no professional scouting experience, but I have been to one degree or another forming my own opinions about NFL Draft prospects since around 1985, when I was in college.

I’m an old-school “draftnik” (does anyone really use that word anymore?) and I was at the Marriott Marquis in person when Vinny Testaverde was drafted first overall in 1987 and the idea of actually attending an event that consisted of guys handing cards to another guy who would read the name on the card aloud seemed off-the-charts nerdy instead of mainstream nerdy.

In this article, I describe my process for scouting, which has evolved considerably over the years, in hopes that you can borrow from it to improve your own process and thus your enjoyment of draft season, or that you can share something from your own process that helps me improve mine. Spread the love.

It’s critical to keep in mind that what should matter most to you is YOUR opinion. You decide how to scout, what traits you like, how you value different positions, and what you think of individual prospects. That’s our entire raison d’être… we built a website that’s a virtual NFL General Manager simulation because we want YOU to be able to see how you would do if you could run a team YOUR way.

Amateur scouting may be a hobby for me – or at least tangentially, as I do run an NFL virtual GM website, a marginally-professional activity – but I take it very seriously and take immense internal pride in my work.

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2015 NFL Draft | Partnership with Ourlads!

Ourlads-Guide-to-the-NFL-Draft-logoWe have big news today! Like, really big.

Here at PowerHouse, we often say our iGMTM game is “The most realistic simulation of being an NFL General Manager on the planet. Period.” Well, if that’s true (and it is,) Ourlads Guide to the NFL Draft is the most intelligent, unbiased, and professional NFL Draft prospects guide on the planet… exclamation point!

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NFL Draft Prospects: the Johnny Manziel Debate

NFL-Draft-Prospects-Johnny-ManzielJohnny Manziel is one of the most exciting college football players in recent memory. Like Tim Tebow before him, he’s the kind of player you turn the TV on to watch play.

But also like Tebow, he comes to the NFL with serious questions about how his game will translate to the next level.

Last night, I had an email exchange with a good friend who was one of the first members on our site and who helped us test everything. Here’s our discussion, unedited. I think it captures the issues facing Manziel as an NFL Draft prospect well, and I’ll bet the same discussion is taking place in personnel departments around the NFL…

Me: btw, I’m starting to think my downgrade of Manziel from R1 to R2 might be an insufficient drop. I don’t see his skill set translating to the next level. Plus, you’ve got all the maturity red flags.

Dave: I’d be shocked if I even get to pass on Manziel, but i’ll keep doing it as many times as I have to.

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2014 NFL Draft Prospects Uploaded

Start Scouting for the 2014 NFL Draft!

By Chris Barry, PowerHouseGM.com

2014 NFL Draft Prospects Jadeveon ClowneyHopefully, your iGM team is thinking more about the playoffs right now than the 2014 NFL Draft.  But whether that’s the case or not, it’s never too early to get started on scouting for next spring!

We’re happy once again to give you the tools to do your scouting right here on our site.  And, soon, we’ll again have a downloadable prospects spreadsheet that you can use on your own if you like.

This table will change, probably a lot, over the coming months.  It includes underclassmen who may return to school, and doesn’t include others who may opt to come out early.  We’ll adjust accordingly as the picture clears up.

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