The staff at Bolts From the Blue has asked me to come on as the BFTB General Manager. My strength in this role is really scouting for the upcoming draft, so it's probably closer to a Scouting Director title than a true GM title. When it comes to scouting for a draft there are usually four stages to scouting prospects that are visible to the public before the draft begins:
The first was the College Football Season, which has come and gone. My background is in Big Ten Football and I'll usually have the most knowledge about prospects from that conference. I also tend to watch the big games between ranked teams as well as a fair share of Pac-10 games. I also keep an eye on players that fit needs for the Chargers (this year it was the running back and defensive tackle positions).
The second is the Bowl Season. The reason the bowl season is a little different from the regular season is that the games feature top competition. Almost every game has an NFL prospect matched up against another NFL prospect and the games are close so almost every player is using every iota of their talent to its fullest. Also, the games are spread out and played on holidays, so its a little easier for an amateur like me to follow lots of games. During the bowl season I posted a series of 7 FanPosts (1 2 3 4 5 6 7) on players I had an interest in seeing.
The third is the All Star Games, which are going on right now. These are interesting because again you see top talent, but you also get a lot of scouts blogging and writing articles on the practices before the game. The practices are important because NFL coaches are present to work with these players and scouts can see how players respond to coaching. Also, players get to play in an NFL-style for these games. For example, Tim Tebow almost never went under center at Florida, but he has been doing it in practice this week for the Senior Bowl. I'll give some reports on the Senior Bowl this weekend.
The fourth is the Combine. The combine is a chance to get some measurables on players. Certain players will benefit for running, jumping, interviewing, etc at levels that weren't expected. It's main purpose is to find out how conditioned and mentally prepared some of the prospects are, but for some Skeletor-like GMs the measurables will also determine draft status. I'll take a look at speed scores for running backs, see how certain players are recovering from injuries and try to give some insight as to who exceeded/lived up to/didn't live up to expectations.
As this new scouting director I'm not really one for a totalitarian regime. In that vein, I'd like to get some thoughts from our members. Here's what I want to know going into the 2010 draft:
In a perfect world, if we could upgrade two starting positions for the 2010 in the draft, which would you like to upgrade?
If we got those players, then which two positions would you like to have drafted where the player could start in 2011 or 2012?
And, finally, which two positions do you want to see the Chargers add depth at?