NFL Lesson: Build Through The Draft


Media day is always full of insignificant questions and story lines, but there was something that stood out for me as the masses talked to the NFL’s two best teams from the 2011 season.

Despite their resounding success, these two teams never stop building through the draft. There’s a reason why the Patriots have dominated for the past decade and there’s a reason why the Giants are playing in their second Super Bowl in four seasons.

The scouting department plays as big a role as any coach or player on the team.

Giants GM Jerry Reese told the media Tuesday that they never stop scouting players.

"I just got back from the Senior Bowl myself and was down there for a couple days. I was also at the East-West game for a couple days. Our scouts are actually looking at film right now at the hotel. That process never stops.“It’s a working job. It’s not a job where you get to work at 10 a.m., leave at 3 p.m. and go play golf. It’s a working job, for me it is anyway. You have to come to work and roll your sleeves up."

The entire coaching staff of the Denver Broncos plus John Elway and Brian Xanders attended the Senior Bowl last week. They know as well as anyone how important it is to build through the draft. Last year’s rookies were among the tops in the league in number of starts and playing time.

Last year at this time, Elway was just getting his feet wet in the front office. He attended the Senior Bowl, but was inexperienced.

"“It was really the first significant football (work), personnel-type, we did as a team after I got the job,” Elway said, “and it does feel different this time. I think learning all the systems, learning how everything works, it’s been a good year. I realize everything that goes into it now after a year of doing it. It has been everything I expected it to be, and this is a big part of it.”“It’s something I feel much better about this year. I hope that means we continue the success we feel like we had with our first draft class of this group, with Brian and our personnel staff to go with John Fox and the coaching staff.” – John Elway to the Denver Post"

Most of you gave the Broncos a B or a B+ for their draft class of 2011. The organization is trying to improve upon that, and based on the fact that the “new” faces have a year of experience in the system, there’s a good chance that they will draft right again.

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