In the second part of this Explosion Number series, we take a look at the Defensive Ends who were invited to the Combine. This is a position of need for the Denver Broncos although it is not an immediate one. The 2012 Draft has quality depth at Defensive End as there are at least ten good prospects with solid Production Ratios and Explosion Numbers in this class. As in the post on Defensive Tackles, I have charts for the Agility Drills from the Combine and the areas these players should fall into. I also have listed players from previous years for you to compare with something familiar.
To refresh, I am using the Explosion Number from an equation developed by Pat Kirwan and noted in his book, "Take your eyes off the Ball." The result of this number shows how explosive an athlete's first step is compared to the rest of the field of candidates. Since the rating systems for NFL teams are so sophisticated, any minuscule measurement can mean the difference in the selection preference between two virtually equal draft prospects. The Explosion Number is one of those measurements that can make that decision easier. Here is the formula:
Bench Press Reps + Vertical Jump + Broad Jump = The Explosion Number (70 or better)
Here are this years draft eligible players who were Combine invites. They are ranked from highest to lowest by their Explosion Number score. The first column lists each player's Overall Draft Ranking (I used CBSDraft) and the column on the far right has their Production Ratio. As you can see, seven players did not participate in all three drills and therefore could not be scored. Twelve had a Production Ratio of .90 or better and out of the twelve who performed at the Combine, half achieved the magic 70 number. I think 16 out of these 19 will get drafted in April, but like I said, there are twelve solid choices in this group.
|OVR||Name||Exp. #||Comb. 40||Bench||Vertical||Broad||20-Yd Shut||3-cone||P. Ratio|
This chart represents a measuring stick for the Agility Drills.
|10-yard Split (40)||Quickness||1.71|
|20-yard Split (40)||Burst||2.81|
|225 Bench Press (Reps)||Upper body strength||24|
|Vertical Jump||Explosiveness,leg strength||33"|
|Broad Jump||Explosiveness,leg strength||9' 9"|
|20-yard Shuttle||Flexibility and burst||4.31|
|60-yard Shuttle||Flexibility and endurance||11.8|
Twelve players meet or beat the 40 Time. Four came up short on the Bench Press, though not enough that can't be gained by the onset of Pre-season. Ten came up short in the Vertical Jump, but all out performed in the Broad Jump. In the 20-Yd Shuttle, seven players ran a 4.31 or lower, with the majority coming in at 4.50. Two players came up short on the 3-cone, which measures the side-to-side agility of a player.
At last. we come to the 2011 Defensive End Draft class and their numbers. Take notice of J.J. Watts numbers. They are the reason he was selected 11th overall by the Houston Texans. He had 68 Tackles, including 17 for a Loss, 18 Quarterback Hits and 5.5 Sacks as a rookie last year.
|OVR||Name||Pos.||Bench||Vertical||Broad||Expl. No.||40 Time||P. Ratio|
I'll leave the rest for you to ponder, but it looks like the Broncos have a shot at a good Defensive End in April's draft.
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