Phil Emery's Bears won't put as much weight on Combine anymore.
This was a classic JA draft. Jerry Angelo passed up future Hall of Fame player, Troy Palamalu, for Michael Haynes. That same 1st round (we had two first round picks that year), we drafted the sex canon (Rex Grossman) instead of grabbing a guy like shutdown CB Nnamdi Asomugha. There were others in that first round we could have had, but didn't pull the trigger.
We blew so many first round draft picks under JA, it makes me sick to think about. This is why I'm fanatical about not blowing our picks now. Make 'em count. Don't roll the dice on a first rounder, but rather do your homework and if any red flags come up on a player, think long and hard before you gamble that 1st round pick.
Jerry was often wanting to look like a genius by finding a guy that others missed. But most of these times he missed & blew our #1 draft picks on losers. I would rather have that solid guy who can start for you & contribute day-1, instead of swinging for the fence and striking out. Busts kill you if you have too many first rounders bust on you.
Later in the draft if you want to gamble, that's not as critical. But 1st round picks need to be good ones.
p.s. I know we got Tillman and Briggs in rounds 2 and 3. JA did a decent job in the middle rounds. It was the first rounds that he killed us.
LINK to the article The NFL Combine is underway in Indianapolis, and as terms like "Underwear Olympics" and "Cattle Herd" are thrown around, let's not forget there is something to be learned from these basic drills.
The Combine has been used in different ways by all the general managers around the league for years, and the Chicago Bears' last GM Jerry Angelo was a big fan; to a fault.
Angelo went overboard with the numbers churned out at the Combine -- things like the standing broad jump, the shuttle run and an IQ test are thrown in with the basic bench press and 40-yard dash -- and went on record as passing on guys he once liked because of poor Combine showings. (One of those was defensive lineman Terrell Suggs, who has gone on to a pretty decent career in Baltimore.)
As for the current Bear GM, Phil Emery, it would appear early on that he gets it. That is: He gets the idea that the Combine is a nice tool to have when evaluating players for the draft, but it must fit in with all the other pieces before being used effectively.
"All those things factor in," Emery recently said, "in terms of creating seperation between players."
That's it. Not creating a new spot for him on your draft board, or eliminating him from your list. Just using the extra added info when needed. Hopefully Emery will prove he has that skill. Angelo proved he did NOT, and his days as an NFL GM are over.