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NFL Limits Evaluations of Underclassmen

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The NFL are making an empty gesture following a record number of underclassmen declaring for the NFL draft.

Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

Don't worry, draft season isn't here again yet, but I thought this was noteworthy today. It seems as though the NFL are trying to appear to be doing something about the number of underclassmen that are declaring for the NFL draft. The plan is to limit the amount of players from each school who are able to get evaluations to five. The assessment will now be restricted to the first two rounds, where previously it has been for the first three. Players will also be advised whether to stay in school or not:

"When you look at our accuracy rate, we did a good job evaluating first- and second-round picks," Vincent told SiriusXM NFL Radio. "Below -- the third, fourth and fifth rounds -- a lot of these players were not getting drafted. It's better for these young men to remain a student-athlete for another year."

The 2014 NFL Draft saw 107 underclassmen declare, which happened to be a new record. Unfortunately 37 of them went undrafted and it's a worrying trend that more and more bubble players are chasing the fame and fortune instead of staying in school, developing both physically and educationally.

However the limit of five players is unlikely to affect many schools. Of the 107 underclassmen who declared last year, only LSU and Cal had 5 or more underclassmen entering the draft. It has been revealed that there could be some exceptions, but they will be judged on a case by case basis.

Alabama coach Nick Saban seems to agree with the new evaluation system:

"A guy is going to get a first-round grade, a second-round grade or a stay-in-school grade," Saban said. "Look, all these players that went out for the draft, that went out for the draft late, or didn't get drafted, they were potential draft picks next year. They're not in the draft next year. They're not playing college football, either."