When his third NFL draft as the Eagles general manager concludes next Saturday, Howie Roseman and his scouting department wont wait long to start preparing for his fourth.
Its an amazing dynamic when you look at the draft process. Its really fun, Roseman said. Were in the process starting in May for the next years draft process. We really get into it in August. We go on the road and we scout all the guys, and we know all the guys, and by the time we get to our December meetings, we can draft. I mean, were ready to go.
Problem is, they still have four months to go. And the coaches, during the previous four months, probably have watched little college football. So once the Eagles season ends, then the general manager and his staff begin receiving even more input.
They start getting involved in the draft process, and their first observation is a bowl game normally, Roseman said. Thats when theyre seeing guys for the first time. Its a totally different way of looking at it than were coming at it.
Theres a challenge. One group has been evaluating players for an entire season. The other has been evaluating players for an entire game.
You try to merge those two perspectives, Roseman said, diplomatically.
Which cant be easy considering that he puts more credence on what he sees during the college football season than after it.
Im a big believer in blink what you see the first time is probably a good idea of whats right and what you believe in. Thats hard to get out of your mind, he said. Whether my first instinct is based on an evaluation of junior tape or part of senior tape, its going to be hard to turn me 180 degrees from that because my mind is kind of set. So when you get people who are coming into the process, and their first evaluations are based on that, its going to be the same thing. Maybe I was nave to that part of it the past couple of years.
I would tell you that I dont think Ive shifted my philosophy from when I first took the job, he said, but when I go back and look at it, where we thought we were just putting a little bit of weight on the All-Star games and the Combine maybe we put a little too much weight than we wanted to on those two things.
Still, its obviously necessary for Roseman to consider the coaches views especially given that head coach Andy Reid is making the final decision. To that end, Roseman also scouts the Eagles coaching staff.
Well, its important to get our coaches on board with the players were going to draft, Roseman said. You also get a better feel for which coaches have a feel and are really into evaluating college players, and some of them who just do it as part of the job.
I think the more you get to know the coaches on your staff their strengths and weaknesses the easier it is for us to figure out who are they guys that should carry a lot of weight and who are they guys who say, Tell me the guys youre drafting and picking and Ill coach them up.
E-mail Andy Schwartz at firstname.lastname@example.org.