On its surface, the vertical jump shows how high a player can get off the ground. When you look at different positions where that matters, the first place the mind goes is wide receivers and defensive backs but there is more to the drill than first meets the eye. The vertical jump indicates to scouts the raw explosiveness of a player. During the drill, players are flat footed, have their hands stretched out above their heads at which point they bend their knees and jump as high as they can. Explosiveness is a trait that pertains to many positions on the football field.
So how does a player’s vertical jump translate into draft position? Let’s look at the top 5 performers since 2000.
The broad jump, like the vertical jump, shows a player’s explosiveness. Players start in a standing position, they bend their knees, swing their arms back and try to jump as far out as possible. Along with the jump itself, the landing is also critical as it shows the player’s ability to control his body.
So how does a player’s broad jump translate into draft position? Let’s look at the top 5 performers since 2000.
The bench press drill shows a player’s pure power and upper body strength. It also shows the level of a player’s cardio. In the drill the weight bar is stacked with 225 lbs and the player lays with his back on the bench and presses the weight as many times as he can. Players are not allowed to arch their backs or bounce the weight off their chests. It’s obvious that offensive and defensive linemen usually perform the best at this drill.
So how does a player’s bench press translate into draft position? Let’s look at the top 5 performers since 2000.
So, what does this all mean?
Well, each of the combine drills test specific characteristics that players will need to be successful in the NFL. These include speed, explosiveness, body control, and strength. Each position has its own set of “must-have” characteristics and the more of those characteristics that a player possesses, the more likely he will catch the eye of the scout. And while a player’s performance at the combine is a factor in him getting drafted, it is just one piece of a much bigger puzzle. The app that I built can be found here. Look and see how your favorite players performed at the combine!