The NFL Draft Explained

A Highline High School student wrote the following article. The views expressed here do not reflect the views of Highline Public Schools or Highline High School. 

The NFL Draft Explained
Angel Haney

On April 25th, 2019 the NFL held its annual draft. The draft is where all 32 National Football League teams come together to select eligible collegiate athletes.  For someone to be eligible for the NFL draft they would have to be out of high school for at least three years. These collegiate athletes are from colleges around the world.  

There are multiple events where prospective players have an opportunity to sell themselves to any interested NFL team. One of the biggest events prior to the draft is the NFL Scouting Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. The NFL Scouting Combine is normally held in late February or early March. The combine evaluates athletic ability by way of multiple physical tests, not directly related to football.  At the combine there are also I.Q. tests. NFL teams interview each player they are considering drafting as the athlete needs to be of good character, and a fit for the team in the role the team wants them to have.

In the process of NFL teams evaluating prospective players, teams not only look at physical talent, but the athletes as individuals. When an NFL team decides to draft a certain player, they are taking a risk on the athlete. With every selection, a team is looking for a player that can not only play well, but represents the franchise positively both on the field and off.

On Draft day, the NFL teams already know when they get to pick.  The order of selection is based on the previous season’s win/loss rankings.  For example; in the 2018/19 season, the New England Patriots won the SuperBowl, therefore, they picked 32nd. The Arizona Cardinals had the worst record overall, so, they earned the 1st overall selection.

In the 2012 draft, with the 75th pick in the third round, the Seattle Seahawks selected Russell Wilson. Many spectators stated that Russell Wilson was too short to play quarterback in the NFL at 5’10”. The Seattle Seahawks overlooked this fact in favor of the fact that he is a natural leader and performed very highly at N.C. State and Wisconsin.  Wilson led Seattle to multiple Super Bowl championships and many say that he is a future Hall of Famer.