Maybe a dumb question, but what the hell, it's slow. An idea that's forming in my head is the value of longevity and how do you account or select for it in the draft?
Here are 2 extreme examples:
1. Shawne Merriman. Picked #12 in the first round. 3 very productive years, 1 mediocre year and basically done.
2. Matthew Charles Light. Picked #48 in the 2nd round. 10 year Starter, 3 pro bowls, still playing at a starter level.
The value in draft picks not used to find another left tackle alone is huge....not to mention the stability and locker room character of these "corner stone" type players.
Maybe it's more how you avoid the Packman Jone's of the world rather than being able to infer the type of player that projects to having a long, productive career.
Do you pass on a Clay Matthews type that gains 45 pounds between his sophmore and junior year (just a hypothetical) using the the Shawne Merriman example?
Look at the Pats first and second round pick history and do you get a sense of less than spectacular players that project to a long period of contributing at a high level, or am I just being a mindless homer? Pro's Mayo, Seymour, Wilfork....con's Maroney, Jackson, etc.
The Stevan Ridley pick got me thinking along this line as he is a junior with very little wear.
A players durability is an individual thing imo. Some guys are indestructible..others are made of glass.
I don't think there' really any pattern you can draft by other than injury history.
AP was considered injury prone coming out of college but so far he has carried quite a load without missing much time.
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