Saturday, September 20, 2008

How important is your time in the 40?

Hall of Fame coach Paul Brown basically invented the importance of the 40-yard dash. Mike Herndon of the Alabama Press-Register writes, "College and pro scouts gather 40 times on all their prospective recruits or draftees, from the swiftest receiver to the biggest offensive tackle, even though it's clearly not a one-size-fits-all measurement. Linemen rarely run more than 10 yards on a play and a 40-yard sprint is rare even for a running back." All that doesn't matter. The 40 is important. Deal with it. Herndon writes:
    (According to Jamie Newberg, a college recruiting analyst for "I think too much emphasis is placed on it. There are a lot of kids who look like Tarzan, but they play like Jane."

    There are also cases where it's the other way around. The histories of the NFL and college football are full of examples of players who excelled despite slow 40 times. The two biggest examples are Jerry Rice and Emmitt Smith, both of whom were generally credited with times of about 4.7, slow for an NFL receiver or running back.

    Smith, of course, is the NFL's all-time leading rusher, and Rice owns most of the league's receiving records.

No comments: