Category: The NFL Lens

  • NFL Lens: Explosive Movement: DT Aaron Donald

    NFL Lens: Explosive Movement: DT Aaron Donald

    The mechanics behind an Aaron Donald predation event. On the surface, a defensive lineman stuffing the run looks similar to a massive predator stalking its prey from a hidden vantage point.  An orca emerging jaws-first from dark water to snatch a seal breaching the surface. A lion exploding through the brush and pouncing on a grazing impala. […]

  • The NFL Lens: Agility and Flexibilty w/LeGarrette Blount

    The NFL Lens: Agility and Flexibilty w/LeGarrette Blount

    It’s always in the hips, folks.  This dude is how most football fans I know react to speed. But if you want to see me act like this guy over a player, show me a prospect with great hips. If a football player is capable of doing a deep squat—especially in the context of his job—I’m […]

  • The NFL Lens: Fingertips Technique w/Jarvis Landry and Mike Evans

    The NFL Lens: Fingertips Technique w/Jarvis Landry and Mike Evans

    Testing technique is a lot like testing character; how well it holds up under stress will tell you a lot. A man’s true character comes out when he’s drunk. -Charlie Chaplin Much to your dismay, I’m not advocating shots before the gauntlet drill at the NFL Combine. I agree, it would be entertaining—even more so […]

  • The NFL Lens: Anticipation and Touch with Drew Brees

    The NFL Lens: Anticipation and Touch with Drew Brees

    The only facets of ideal quarterback play where I couldn’t use Drew Brees as a model are a rocket arm and height. I have a much broader range of acceptable traits with my quarterback scouting than most. Learn why.  Quarterbacks are time travelers. The ball represents the present. Where they want the ball to go […]

  • The NFL Lens: Economy of Movement With Michael Bennett

    The NFL Lens: Economy of Movement With Michael Bennett

    A look at one of the most disruptive defensive linemen in the game. Whether it’s offense or defense, you can often spot the best players on the field based on the economy of their movement. Even if that player has a variety of flashy moves and strings them together in mind-blowing ways, they only do […]

  • The NFL Lens: Balance With Jay Ajayi

    The NFL Lens: Balance With Jay Ajayi

    Jay Ajayi’s impressive display of balance against Pro-Bowl caliber defensive end Kyle Williams. Define “balance” and “power.” Ask two talent analysts to do this and it’s one of the easier ways to take a conversation about football into the weeds. There’s enough overlap between the two concepts that it can spawn debates about what belongs […]

  • The NFL Lens: A Maritime Tale of Pulp Fiction w/Rob Gronkowski

    The NFL Lens: A Maritime Tale of Pulp Fiction w/Rob Gronkowski

    Batten down the hatches, Rob Gronkowski tells a shocking maritime tale. I’ve been spending time each day diagramming run blocking schemes and pass routes. One of those routes is the sail route. When drawn up in a book or a blackboard, a sail route (bottom left quadrant) looks like an upside-down “L”. One of the […]

  • The NFL Lens: Pad Level With Jarvis Landry

    The NFL Lens: Pad Level With Jarvis Landry

    A great example of pad level from a wide receiver? Go figure.  What’s the most important thing you look for in a player? It’s easily in the top-10 of common questions that I get about evaluating football prospects for a living. One essential answer is comfort giving and receiving physical contact. You’d think this quality […]

  • The NFL Lens: Ball Security

    The NFL Lens: Ball Security

    Ball security that can withstand a defensive gauntlet. Ball security is a more complex subject than it appears. In theory, it’s so vital that it can change games and alter the course of careers if not practiced. David Wilson and Stevan Ridley can attest that a lack of ball security can put the kibosh on […]

  • NFL Lens: Tight Coverage With T.Y. Hilton

    NFL Lens: Tight Coverage With T.Y. Hilton

    With noted exceptions, there’s a difference between “open” in college and pro football. In the NFL, there’s at least one play a game where the quarterback leans on his primary wide receiver to win the ball against tight coverage. It doesn’t sound like a lot but consider the urgency that accompanies most moments football games. […]