Reggie McKenzie on Jarvis Jones: You can’t change what you see on tape


For years under Al Davis, the Raiders had a reputation for drafting players who ran very fast even if their on-field results were less impressive.

Davis has passed away, leaving a new group in charge of making personnel decisions and they’re using different criteria. That was evident at Georgia’s pro day on Thursday when General Manager Reggie McKenzie weighed in on linebacker Jarvis Jones’ workout. Jones ran a 4.9-second 40-yard dash, which was slower than expected and which led observers like Mike Mayock of the NFL Network to suggest Jones could slip down draft boards. McKenzie had a slightly different take.

“You can never dispel what you see on tape,” McKenzie said, via the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

There’s a strange dance that goes on during the run-up to the draft where those who make a living studying the draft bang the drum for judging players based on how they perform on the field right up until the point a player has a disappointing workout. You obviously want to have fast players on your team, but you want productive ones more and Jones was very productive at Georgia while playing in a conference that every pundit has deemed the finest in all the land. It seems strange that one 40-yard dash would be given more weight than that.

27 responses to “Reggie McKenzie on Jarvis Jones: You can’t change what you see on tape

  1. The combine doesn’t measure a player’s heart. I’ll have to agree with big Reg on this one.

  2. Problem is for the Raiders is that with the #3 pick in the draft, NO second round pick and a legacy of bad contracts and even worst draft picks there is NO way you take a chance on the Jones’ and Te’o of this world in that slot.

    Reggie will either trade out of the pick to a team needy for a QB and willing to take a chance on Geno Smith OR select DE (Floyd) or DT (Lotulelei).

    One (or both) should still be there.

    Raiders were such a mess on the defensive side of the ball in 2012 (and with Allen having a defensive background with a DC that field a REALLY bad defense last year); my guess is they continue to focus on re-building the defensive side of the ball in the Draft.

    Already started with the LB Corps in FA so now it is a blue chip DT/DL then seek secondary help.

  3. His apparent diva-dom and ego may be more damaging to Jones than his 40-time.

    Self-proclaimed “best player in the draft”-type stuff.

  4. Nevermind the 40, and nevermind what he has on tape. Isn’t this the guy with the spinal stenosis?

  5. I agree…his 10 yard split is much more interesting to me. The postion he plays requires instant explosion not sustained speed. The 40 is dissapointing but it’s not a deal breaker.

  6. LBs run at pursuit angles not straight. Using straight line speed to evaluate a LB prospect is dumb. A new breed needs to step in the NFL and revolutionize th way teams scout and evaluate prospects.

  7. What the 4.9 forty does is make teams in the top five shy away and the top ten pause.

    A miss that high causes people to lose jobs. If McKenzie takes him and misses, he won’t lose HIS job, but, he will have cashed in one of his Raider GM lives, that’s for sure.

  8. Reggie is the worst GM in the league nobody cares what he thinks . The few talented players he had left because because of his incompetance of bringing in Dennis Allen and the west coast offense disaster let alone his signing of two cornerbacks with an injury history.

  9. “raiderlyfe510 says:
    LBs run at pursuit angles not straight. Using straight line speed to evaluate a LB prospect is dumb…”
    …..right up until he has to cover a back out of the backfield.

  10. What people forget is the field is 50 yds wide so pursuit from side line to sideline speed is very important! North to south ok the 40 is useless but on tracking and pursuit is key as well.

  11. Someone please explain how he’s a diva or anything like that? He said he’s the best player in the draft? So what. It’s called confidence. He never caused any problems at UGA and was a team leader. The diva comments just show you have no idea what you are talking about other thn reading that one article where he said he was the best player in the draft

  12. I went to the SEC Championship this year. One thing I noticed was that ‘Bama seemed to always run away from Jones. If Saban (who is arguably the best college coach in the country) wants nothing to do with him, then my guess is he is pretty darn good. He’s excelled in the best conference in the country for multiple years. Is he worth #1 overall? Probably not. Is he a 1st round talent? Absolutely. I hope he slides to the Steelers.

  13. Not working out, slacking off, decline in health, etc can change a guy from what you see on tape. Tape is the past. When I watch LT on tape, he’s still got it. If he got on a field today, it wouldn’t be the same.

  14. fuglyflorio says:
    Mar 22, 2013 9:07 AM
    Too slow … buyer beware.

    Said that about Brandon Spikes and Vontaze Burflict. How’d that work out for their respective teams?

  15. The 40 is one of the most underrated measures of “football ability”. Sure, its a great measure of athleticism but playing LB is more about pre snap reads, preparation, position, gap discipline, instincts etc, if he constantly puts himself in a great position to make plays against say, big tight ends in the seam, or physical slot receivers, I dont see this being a problem, it’ll seem like he’s playing extremely fast. In the run game, it wont hinder him at all right now, he’s extremely physical at the point of attack and is a natural at getting off blocks(you cant coach this), he’ll immediately be a top 15 run stopper in the league on day one. Yeah, 4.9 is “slow” but he’ll rarely be asked to run in a straight line on the football field.

  16. Reggie is driving up the asking price for the third pick.Hes no fool Hes in a pretty good spot,he can either get a strong defensive player or he can get multiple picks to fill needs from desperate teams looking for a quick fix(hello Buffalo and Arizona).

  17. Uh, Reggie just try to get through this draft with some impact players, get a wildcard berth, then you can chime in.

    After that fiasco with 23 mil signing for Mike Brisiel and that awful ZBS debacle, you just stick to the scouting and stack picks.

  18. nor can you ever dispel that the college game is much slower than the nfl game. In other words slow guys in college look fast, and slow guys in the nfl look slow.

  19. “Reggie will either trade out of the pick to a team needy for a QB and willing to take a chance on Geno Smith OR select DE (Floyd) or DT (Lotulelei).”

    Just another talking head listening to other talking heads… The options are limitless, sit down Stuart Scott.

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