Some teams aren’t fans of unlimited private workouts, either

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The Brandon Thomas ACL tear could prompt some agents to draw a line over private workouts, especially with two extra weeks until the draft and no limit on the number of on-campus running and catching and cutting and other activities sessions.

Some teams may understand the reluctance to engage in so much pre-draft activity with no compensation or protection, other than insurance the player buys on his own.  As one scout with many years of service told PFT earlier today, “If I were an agent I would never let teams do workouts.”

It’s not just the agents that have concerns.  For teams, the proliferation of private workouts calls into question the accuracy of the medical information obtained at the Scouting Combine.

“Ridiculous,” one high-level scout told PFT regarding the extra private workouts that will occur because of the 14-day postponement of the draft.  “You fear what kind of condition these players will be in when you draft them.  The Combine is at the end of February and now the draft is in mid-May.  It gives them 10 weeks or so to injure or beat themselves up for 32 teams.  It kind of makes the Combine physical obsolete.  Which is the main purpose of the Combine.”

If that’s the way teams feel, teams need to make their views known — and teams need to propose rule changes that would limit the number of on-campus workouts or apply a deadline for working out incoming rookies.

Or maybe players should refuse to engage in private workouts.  For a guy whose stock can only go down (especially if he gets injured), what’s wrong with refusing to risk injury without compensation or protection?  Sure, most of the media would wag a finger at anyone who spurns the warped notion of “competition” that goes along with working out at the Scouting Combine or elsewhere, but only because most of the media wants to milk the pre-draft cow until dust comes out of the udder.

We look forward to the day when a player who is regarded based on his playing career to be one of the top picks drops the mic and walks off the stage, refusing to workout at the Scouting Combine, the Pro Day, or anywhere else.

Brandon Thomas surely wishes he had.  For different reasons, Teddy Bridgewater probably wishes he had, too.

25 responses to “Some teams aren’t fans of unlimited private workouts, either

  1. With all the game tape, the workouts can really only hurt a guy.
    Look at the tape. In the field during a game is what’s important.
    The rest is just publicity

  2. It’s easy to find somebody that can figure out how to negotiate your slotted rookie contract, but it’s not easy to find somebody that you can rely on to give you good football and business advice. It would be nice if there was more of a concerted effort to educate prospects in a variety of areas that can help them become better pros, but it’s not like the NFL would have any clue how to orchestrate that since they can’t get any one job done fully right. Just don’t sign up with the first suit that you run into that says they can help you. Do your research and talk to more people so you don’t get stuck with the lousy agents and advisors that don’t really care enough nor know how to help you.

  3. How many extra months do teams need to scout players that they have already been scouting for 3-4 years?

  4. If a player is hurt while practicing for a team… the TEAM should pay for the medical cost and insurance… The reason being that some teams have no interest of drafting these players but audition them just because they can!

    They risk jeopardizing the players entire career if they get hurt, and the team has zero responsibility! We already have one player that will dip in the draft or may never be drafted because of these workouts, Please don’t let these unemployed people have to flip the cost just to work out for a bunch of millionaires and Billionaires!

  5. Seriously tho… If you’re gonna back the draft up 2 weeks, then back the combine up. That would actually help playoff & SB teams prepare too. Win/win.

  6. One of my buddies is a scout and pretty much said the entire scouting community hates that the draft was pushed back. Not only for the reasons mentioned, but scouts only get the period after the draft and before training camp for down time and vacation, so it’s even less time with their families. I don’t think this May draft deal will last too long

  7. Man, you just can’t win with you guys. If they workout and get hurt, you guys talk about how they should be limiting their workouts. If they refuse a workout, you guys talk about how they are difficult or lazy. Can’t win for losing.

  8. The agents and the NFLPA need to address this. The teams have no reason to worry about possible injury since they are currently not responsible. I wonder how much money the agent of Brandon Thomas lost?

    Game film, Senior Bowl, Combine, and various college pro days should be sufficient.

  9. Moving the draft to May is about asinine. It was more for the NFL to have a major event in the month of May than anything else. Plus, the rookies get one less month to study the playbook and have less of an impact their first season.

  10. It’s a business of fine tuned athletes(that get paid ridiculous amounts of money) who are suppose to hold up physically. Weed out the weak. On the bright side.. still got that college education to fall back on.

  11. These players don’t just show up on Sundays with an NFL body. They workout and train either by themselves or with a trainer almost everyday anyway. What’s the difference if a coach is there to watch it?

  12. Blame the idiot Roger Goodell! It’s his idea to have the draft in May so there is something big each month. All the nfl cares about is $$$$$$

  13. There’s nothing requiring the teams to request the private workouts.

    There’s nothing requiring the players to attend these private workouts.

    I’m not seeing a problem which needs to be legislated.

    If the team doesn’t like them, don’t do them.

    If the players are scared of doing them, the player doesn’t have to do them.

    There’s no need for politics on this one. If noone does it, they will go away on their own.

  14. Good article. I see one solution is the teams all get together and just inform the NFLPA, the NFL and all the agents: its the combine or nothing. The teams will not attend any college practices or tryouts.

    The combine was created for a purpose. By players skirting it they are getting extra weeks to get in shape, getting to set there own agenda and practice on their terms. More importantly they are avoiding being compared to their competition.

    That is the real reason for this. If they suck at the combine and there position counterparts don’t, its money down the drain.

    The agents really are ruling the roost here and its time the owners stop this silliness. Heck move the combine back two weeks so they can get in better shape and have at it.

  15. Goodall and the NFL saw Nascar extend its season and its painfully too long. Hockey in July? Baseball has how many freeking games?
    The NFL see’s the need to have the draft in May, something to talk about besides baseball and hockey playoffs (steal the stage) and extend the season to more games and more playoff teams.
    Its about the almighty buck.

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