If anyone sat through any of the draft, or hours of pre-draft talk on ESPN, they undoubtedly heard Mel Kiper, Jr. spouting off about who he thought were the top players, etc… And they also heard basically the same thing. A bunch of useless stats that have nothing to do with productivity on the field. Even during the draft, where you had a bunch of serious football minds (Hall of Famer Steve Young, Super Bowl Championship Coach Jon Gruden and NFL Linebacker Tom Jackson), all he could do was point to a bunch of stats. So and so had 15 reps on the bench press. He had a 40 inch vertical. He’s a great athlete. Never did you hear the football guys bring up a stat like that.
And yet here was Mel Kiper, Jr. arguing about picks because of 40 times. Or bench press reps. As if that has EVER mattered on the field.
It’s happening in other sports too. People are more worried about size stats, rather than what they see on the field/ice/court. It’s a horrible plague that you would think has been debunked at this point. As ‘slow’ running backs like Emmitt Smith take their place in the record books. QB’s with ‘awful’ throwing motions like Phillip Rivers making the Pro Bowl. ‘Undersized’ linebackers and Defensive Ends that tear through the competition.
Because reps on a bench press. How high you can jump standing still. How fast you can run in a straight line with no equipment on – don’t matter. Not now. Not ever.