As Ed and I discussed his client, Houston DT Joey Mbu, he casually asked me where I saw him going. I gritted my teeth and told him sixth or seventh round. He countered that he expected him to go in the fourth. As the workout went on, Ed spoke to a Texans scout who had Mbu as an undrafted free agent. This meant Ed had to do the difficult chore of letting Mbu and his mother know there was a good chance no team would pick him on draft day. Which happened.
It made me wonder, what made Ed think Mbu was going fourth round? I had spoken to five scouts and all five had him as a bubble draftee and most likely a priority free agent. That’s not the kind of return Ed was seeking. Today, I had this text conversation with an agent who had kicked the tires on Mbu last year.
Agent: The trick is to know it before you sign the player. I knew Joey would sink, that is why I backed off.
Me: The question I have is, why did Ed think he was going fourth round? Who thought that?
Agent: Multiple scouts did. A lot of people I talked to said they liked the size and arm length. Sr. Bowl invite. And the school was selling him hard to NFL teams. I went against what I was hearing after multiple games and not seeing what I needed to out of the athlete. Some good scouts that I trust liked him early and off junior film.
Me: That really puzzles me. When I called around (scouts) crapped all over him. I guess it shows how quickly a star can fall.
Agent: What time of year was it you had talks?
Agent: Got you. My talks were in the summer and July and August. Also as you know people see guys very differently.
Ed didn’t make a mistake based on terrible information or lack of scouting contacts. It just goes to show that scouts are fallible, too, and often a prospect in December is a non-factor on draft day. It’s just one more reason this is such a volatile business with no guarantees.